Girls Graduate Initiative

Education is the path to opportunity and prosperity

Why Support Girls Graduate?

We are committed to increasing the number of girls who stay in school and ultimately graduate high school ready for college or career. For Colorado women and girls to achieve economic independence, completing high school and continuing education during their lifetimes is crucial.

It’s a startling statistic – close to 4,500 girls in Colorado dropout of high school each year, and 85 percent will not return to complete high school. This means approximately four girls drop out of high school every hour of every school day. Education is the path to opportunity, prosperity, and a stronger Colorado. Women without a high school diploma earn on average $7,000 per year less than their male counterparts without high school diplomas. When girls complete high school,they are more likely to secure employment, earn more income, maintain better health, and are less likely to rely on public supports or live in poverty.

Girls Rock from Rio to Pueblo County!

One didn’t have to go to Rio this summer to be inspired by the power of female athletes. At Boys & Girls Clubs of Pueblo County (BGCPC) – future soccer, golf, and volleyball stars – and most importantly, future high school graduates – are 
Girls Rock of Boys & Girls Club of Pueblo County
Photo Credit: Girls Rock
on the rise through Girls Rock, an afterschool sports program. Boys & Girls Club famously introduced 2016 Annual Luncheon Special Guest Misty Copeland to ballet through an afterschool program.

In 2015, 100 percent of Girls Rock participants progressed to the next grade, in part because of the team-oriented culture and BGCPC weekly progress check-ins on the girls’ grades. The process helped keep the students accountable while identifying potential issues and solutions early in the semester.

The middle school program is so popular that several girls come back as peer coaches once they enter high school. “For some girls, it’s the first time they’ve been involved in sports, and Girls Rock provides a real sense of belonging,”said Melanie Bravo, President & CEO of BGCPC.

Jessica Archuleta, a Girls Rock alum who will attend CSU-Pueblo to study psychology this fall, agrees. “Motivating yourself to do well in school can be hard. Girls Rock made me believe that anything you put your mind to you can accomplish with hard work, self-discipline, and determination,” she said.

Why partner with WFCO?

  • Our research helps us learn more about the causes of issues impacting girls and lay the groundwork for the solutions.Our 2013 comprehensive research report, The Status of Women and Girls in Colorado, shows there is a direct correlation between dropping out of high school and lower income throughout a woman’s lifetime. We’ve funded extensive research, studied the issues and partnered with many Colorado organizations to understand the pathways and factors that leave girls at risk of dropping out of school.

  • In 2014, WFCO granted more than $160,000 to community organizations that collaborate with schools to provide evidence-based school engagement, family engagement, and academic services to middle school and high school girls at risk of dropping out of school.We will measure outcomes around graduation rates, school attendance rates, behavioral issues, academic achievement and growth, and school engagement.

  • Empowering girls so they may complete high school is not only important for girls’ future economic security, but also for their self-esteem and the quality of their adult lives. We’re moving in the right direction, but we must do more. We envision a time when girls who are in danger of slipping through the cracks are identified early and empowered to rise up and own their full potential.

Join Us to Support our Girls Graduate Initiative

To learn more about partnering with The Women’s Foundation of Colorado to improve opportunities for girls throughout our state, please contact us.

Regarding Partnership Opportunities: 

Alison Friedman 
Manager, Community Initiatives and Investments

Regarding Sponsorship Opportunities:

Renee Ferrufino
Vice President of Development

1901 East Asbury Avenue
Denver, CO 80208
(303) 285-2960


Catalyzing community to advance and accelerate economic opportunities for Colorado women and their families.

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