Bringing a world of opportunity to girls who need it most. 

The MISSION of the The Lower Eastside Girls Club (LESGC) is to break the cycle of local poverty by training the next generation of ethical, entrepreneurial, and environmental leaders. 

Why is it important?

New York City’s most legendary neighborhood can be a tough place for a girl to grow up.  Until the center formed in 1996, there was a historic lack of services available to young women in the L.E.S. The census tracks along the East River, directly across from the girls’ club, indicated in 2010 that over half of families with children fell below the poverty line. It’s a neighborhood where only 50% of high school students graduate, 85% of those public schools are considered overcrowded and 60% of youth are raised in single parent households. That’s why the LESGC plays such a vital role in providing a safe place to connect girls and young women with healthy and successful futures.

How do they do it?

The LESGC has NYC’s only Girl Club, a spanking new 33,000 sq ft facility designed to help nurture the neighborhood’s dynamic young female minds. With a bevy of programs (offered no-cost to girls and families) aimed at the arts, sciences, leadership and wellness, business mentoring, college and career prep, outdoor summer programs, environmental and social justice advocacy, and not to be outdone, a 64-seat planetarium that teaches Earth and sky sciences. The results speak for themselves too; astronomical percentages of girls at the Club report they are more interested in STEM subjects, less anxious and more focused, more aware of issues that impact their social lives and community, along with the Club playing a huge role in helping them to set goals, plan ahead and stay motivated.

The LESGC also runs several social venture businesses that offer job training and employment opportunities for teens and young mothers. Such as, the Art+ Community Gallery, La Tiendita Fair Trade and Girl Made Gift Shop at the Essex Street Market, Celebrate Cafe, and the Sweet Things Bake Shop.

How you can #TravelKindly:
  • Choose The Lower Eastside Girls Club as your local charity when you book hotels with Kind Traveler.
  • Visit and support one of the aforementioned social venture business while you’re in the neighborhood.
  • Donate a one-time gift or pledge over time. Or, make an in-kind contribution, which primarily consists of materials, products or services that support their programmatic mission.
  • Follow the girl’s progress and see what they’re up to on their blog.

Local Hotel: The Standard East Village

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