Her Idea mentors students in college and career readiness. The program aims to help young women build a supportive professional network and develop essential skills and knowledge by taking on leadership roles with real-world problem-solving challenges. The 2022 Her Idea Gala spotlights the following mentees and their exciting projects:

Karen started a nonprofit teaching first aid skills to middle school and high school students of San Francisco’s Excelsior neighborhood. In January, she was awarded a $5,000 grant by the YMCA’s Youth Empowerment Fund (YEF) to start this program.

Lexi imagined a space where youth could come and safely express themselves. Lexi was awarded a $10,000 grant by YEF to build a music production studio at her arts-focused high school. She has designed an audio engineering program; built a music production studio from scratch; and taught her peers how to master, mix, and record in the newly designed studio.

Lily created a dance program for neurodivergent youth called Danceable. Her goal is to make dance programs more accessible for disabled youth in San Francisco. In January, she was awarded a $5,000 grant by YEF to build her dream program.

Kera is an aspiring makeup artist and filmmaker. Her project goal is to help dismantle Eurocentric beauty standards that American culture makes women of color spend their entire lives trying to live up to. She is creating a video project that explores how the beauty industry has hurt Black women.

Anique is a visual artist who feels strongly about the “art drought” in public schools, primarily evident in lower-income schools. She established a free arts education program for children ages 5-10. “A big part of this project is to boost kids’ confidence and help them understand the power of their artistic capabilities, and who they are as a person,” says Anique.

Leila is creating a curriculum about harm-reduction policies and practices as a way to spread information to young people to make sure they understand the risks and adverse effects of drug usage.

Daniela defines herself as “a survivor, a healer, a leader, and an artivist.” Daniela organized a school-wide student walkout last year in solidarity for survivors of trauma. This movement spread across the Bay Area. Her goal is to create a healing circle for survivors of color in the community to come together, not feel alone, and heal. She was awarded a $5,000 grant YEF to support her idea.

The event will be held on Thursday, May 26, at 6 p.m., at the War Memorial Building’s Green Room, 401 Van Ness Avenue. The evening will begin with refreshments, followed by presentations, dinner and performance, silent auction, and networking. Tickets are limited: General admission, $70; VIP, $110. Limited tickets for Her Idea’s in-person 2022 Gala are available now at www.heridea.org.