Helping Teen Girls Embrace Their Potential

January 25, 2008

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African-American teens have the highest pregnancy rates in the country. Tomorrow, one organization is taking action to change that statistic.

The theme is “No More Drama, When Girls Become Women.” It's a nod to Mary J. Blige song.

Most of the 100 girls who will attend are African American. There's been much ballyhoo about the urban black male crisis. But Melissa Harris, CEO of Embracing Your Future Association, says young black girls can't be forgotten.

HARRIS: The need for the programming for young ladies is because they have such low self-esteem. They have low self respect for themselves. Harris' organization is sponsoring the free conference at South Suburban College.

She says young ladies often disrespect each other and use names like “gold digger” and “backstabber.” The conference goal is for them to improve their self images and self awareness.

I'm Natalie Moore, Chicago Public Radio.