What is Girls Rock Fort Worth (GRFW)?
Girls Rock Fort Worth exists to empower girls, of all backgrounds and abilities through musical education, performance and workshops in an all female oriented environment. Our goal is to provide them with a positive and supportive community of peers and mentors to enhance their self-esteem and encourage social change. The aim of GRFW is not to create rock stars but to provide the stage for our campers to discover that they have what it takes to change the world. Our hope is that each camper will find their voice and learn that they are allowed to take up space.
A Bit O’ History
Rock ‘n’ Roll Camp for Girls was founded in 2001 in Portland, Oregon. It has since expanded all over the world. The Girls Rock Camp Alliance was formed in 2007 as a tool for networking and support. A conference is held yearly for member camps to share experiences and exchange ideas to help and inspire each other.
Sarah Reagan, the Founder/Executive Director of GRFW, first discovered and fell in love with the Rock Camp program while visiting Austin. A seed was planted to make Girls Rock happen in Fort Worth. She volunteered as a workshop presenter at Girls Rock Dallas in 2015 and drove away from that experience determined to make this dream a reality.
In the Fall of 2015, the Organizing Team began working on the first camp. GRFW began collaborating with Girls Rock Dallas in early 2016 in order to share resources and skills. The first camp was held in Fort Worth on July 25-29 with an End-of-Camp Showcase at The Live Oak Music Hall & Lounge on July 30.
Girls Rock Camp
Girls Rock Camp is a summer day camp where girls (ages 8-17) learn an instrument, form a band, write an original song and perform a concert at a live music venue. They also attend workshops each day which cover various topics. Through this they learn to find and use their voices, express their creativity, gain leadership skills, support and encourage each other and develop important life skills.
Why Only Girls?
Representation of girls in the rock music industry and culture has always been the exception rather than the rule. As much as we’d like to think that all things are equal now, reality shows us that girls and women still have an uphill battle in the world of rock music as well as in many other fields.
The strength of GRFW is its focus on female empowerment; music is the vehicle for positive messaging. We show young girls that they can write music, play instruments, sing and perform as well as anyone who puts her mind to it. We’re working for a better future for girls who want to rock in whatever endeavor they choose.
GRFW is not just a music camp. “The campers are not just learning technique as much as they are learning how to communicate in a way that they aren’t usually allowed to. When girls are allowed to let go and not be called crazy, or to yell without being called angry, then they learn that the world they live in is limitless–or at least that the possibilities are. Girls discover that they draw their own boundaries, that they can push those boundaries through art, that they can be heard. You have to be able to imagine that you are bigger than you are, especially when girls are usually taught to be smaller, both literally and figuratively.” – from the Rock ‘n’ Roll Camp for Girls book, 2008
Girls Rock Camp Alliance (GRCA)
Girls Rock Camp Alliance (GRCA) provides resources and networking opportunities for its affiliate camps, and promotes the establishment of like-minded institutions worldwide. All members of the GRCA share similar missions, values, and ideas about how to run a successful girls rock camp.
Girls Rock Fort Worth strives to embody the core values of GRCA. They are:
We value the power of music as a means to create personal and social change;
We value efforts that actively expand opportunities for girls and women;
We value positive approaches to fighting sexism;
We value integrity, honesty, and respect;
We value appropriate sharing of resources, cooperation, and collaboration;
We value using our collective voice to further our mission;
We value diversity.