Karma for Cara Microgrants help fund exceptional service projects led by youth 18 and under working to better their communities. Read about our microgrant recipient, Sabina, a 17-year-old who hosts a STEM summer camp for elementary and middle school aged girls in her community.
1. How did you become involved with Girl Science?
I always loved science and math. When I entered high school, I noticed there were very few girls in my advanced science and math classes. I also read studies that showed very few girls in the U.S. are pursuing STEM careers. I have been working in a research lab since ninth grade and understood what it was like to feel frustrated at times. I wanted to show young girls that science could be fun and exciting and become as passionate about science as I am. Initially I decided to organize a free STEM summer camp for elementary and middle school girls in my community. The girls really enjoyed it, and we had a lot of fun. People started asking me if I can run this program in other areas. It was then that I had an idea to train other high school and college students to organize similar camps so that we can have Girls Science Interactive in other locations. I am so happy that this year we were able to open six new summer camps in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and we are currently working on expanding this into New York and Kentucky.
2. Why is your work important to you?
After running the camps this year, I was so happy to see the girls smile and feel happy after performing fun and exciting experiments. Half of the camps were in areas where families may not have been able to afford summer camps, and the kids were so glad to have had this opportunity.
3. How did the money from the microgrant help with your project?
Thanks to the generous grant, we were able to open more free STEM summer camps for elementary and middle school girls. Half of the camps were in low-income areas where families may not be able to afford to spend money on summer camps or after school programs.
4. What message of giving back do you have for others?
I think everyone should strive to give back to their communities in some way, even if they start small. I am still amazed at how quickly Girls Science Interactive evolved from one camp in my local town into multiple states. But most importantly, people should not be afraid to try something new. Girls Science Interactive has not only helped many kids, but it has also taught other teenagers and college students to become leaders themselves.