Girls Inc. of OC Helps Spearhead $10M Award for Workplace Equality Project

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Girls Inc., the national organization that inspires all girls to be strong, smart, and bold, has received $10 million in funding as one of four awardees selected by the Equality Can’t Wait Challenge (hosted by Melinda French Gates’ Pivotal Ventures among other donors leading the charge advancing equity) to benefit its Project Accelerate program. Project Accelerate aims to expand the power and influence of women in the United States by 2030.

Girls Inc. of Orange County was part of a team of seven affiliate leads that developed Project Accelerate and spearheaded the application process.

Building on Girls Inc.’s evidence-based programming, Project Accelerate addresses inequality in the workplace, particularly the absence of women of color in positions of influence and leadership. The program will accelerate young women’s trajectories through college and career entry, leveraging partnerships with corporations and social impact organizations to ensure both their preparation and their access to positions of influence.

Project Accelerate will also reduce the gender gap by working with young women starting as early as their junior year in high school to ensure they have the resources and support to thrive as leaders.

Through a network of 78 affiliates, including here in Orange County, Project Accelerate aims to lift 5,400 diverse women into corporate positions of power and influence, shifting the equity landscape for generations.

“The development of Project Accelerate has been an extraordinary collaboration aimed at changing the career trajectory for young women,” said Girls Inc. of Orange County’s Board President Bailey Weinberg, a resident of Newport Beach. “This transformational award will help us unleash the power of the Girls Inc. network, our influential boards, community leaders, corporate donors, and alumnae, to provide paths and mentorship for young women who have been excluded from leadership opportunities. We are excited to see how Project Accelerate and the awesome women participating will thrive and redefine equity in Orange County and across the nation.”

Project Accelerate will prepare thousands of young women leaders not merely to succeed in workplace environments, but also to affect cultural change from within. Expected outcomes include an increased number of young women graduating on time, an increased network of influence for girls from historically marginalized groups, and job placement in high-paying, positions of leadership.

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