Girls ’Own Story is a 12-week program in which girls, grades 6-9, explore topics that matter to them, such as self-esteem, gender roles, and social media through photography, creative writing, and exploring various art forms. They also learn about the contributions of women artists trough viewing and discussing their work. Girls create a journal to free write about their experiences as well as prompts provided by the teaching artist. The program concludes with an exhibition of the girls’ work.

The program main objectives are to:

  • Encourage individuality and foster a sense of personal history
  • Promote self-expression and creativity through visual art
  • Encourage thoughts on identity, gender roles and beauty
  • Encourage teamwork and group camaraderie
  • Promote visual literacy
  • Strengthen critical thinking skills through open-ended questions, reflection, collaboration, and creative projects
  • Ultimately boost self-esteem and in turn, academic performance, of adolescent girls.

First piloted in 1994, Girls’ Own Story is an original HCP program that was revived in the Spring 2016 through a partnership with Wesley Community Center. Since then, it has been taught in schools and community centers around the greater Houston area such as HISD, SBISD, Wesley Community Center, Baker Ripley Schools, Culture of Health Advancing Together to name a few.


View the Exhibition


“What I learned was how to like myself and appreciate what I have…”

“I like that you can talk about your feelings without anyone judging…”

“I learned how to take pictures, how to make friends, how to be open and connect with others.”

—Girls’ Own Stories students from Westchester Academy for International Studies


Girls’ Own Stories is provided in partnership with schools and community centers throughout Houston.

To learn more about Girls’ Own Stories and how you can be involved, please contact our Access and Community Education Associate (ACE) by e-mail below.

Email ACE


Girls’ Own Stories, 2016
Girls’ Own Stories, 1994
Girls’ Own Stories, 1994