Priyanka Jaisinghani is our first Young Professional of the Month. She shared on what inspires her to take action and on her mentorship program delivering on Sustainable Development Goal 5: achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls.
Tell us about yourself and your interests:
I have spent the majority of my life living amongst different cultures -- From the United States, India, Mexico to the United Arab Emirates. I witnessed poverty in India and the rise of drugs in Mexico which contrasted deeply with the riches of the UAE. These cultural experiences have caused me to build a career focused on creating impact. Now that I call New York City my home, I’ve been heavily invested in finding ways of creating impact, and some of these include:
1. Co-founding my mentorship program (GirlzFTW): a platform connecting high school and college girls with ‘badass’ women in the industry to help them through the highs and lows of life. Within our first year we were able to partner with the United Nation’s Youth Observer to amplify our impact with our first international cohort of 18 girls and a following of over 100,000.
2. Actively working to advance the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through
narratives, interviews and social campaigns through solutions journalism. My writing has been published both online and in print in over 25 countries, sold in Barnes & Noble stores nationwide, and provided stories of hope, possibility and challenge to individuals across the world.
3. Working with the refugee populations through many mediums: From working with documentary
filmmaker Christ Temple to host his first movie screening in NYC, to working directly with refugees organizations and teaching them English to help establish their roots (both in Dubai and New York).
Which of the Sustainable Development Goals are you most passionate about and why?
To dream of a more equal world where women are greater players is not so distant of a reality, and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal #5 is helping spearhead this push. To provide context, Global Goal #5 is focused on “achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls.” -- and this is a goal that I’m most passionate about advancing.
To take a quick look at the landscape today, women remain underrepresented in leadership and management positions both held publicly and privately. Only 23% of women are represented in
a political sphere and less than ⅓ of management positions are held by women. If we’re going
to be moving the needle to help achieve this Global Goal by 2030, then we’re going to have to do more than just write down the goal.
What are you doing to advance this Goal?
As we start to instill greater skills for our future generation of women to become the next
leaders, I co-foudned GirlzFTW (with Nicol Perez and Amanda Arevalo) to champion the change through education and mentorship to progress on SDG#5.
As a global mentorship program, GirlzFTW is channeling the magic of women everyday by connecting young girls in high school and college to inspirational and badass women from varying fields, industries and backgrounds. Education and mentorship provides immeasurable access to resources that most cannot find in everyday institutions, it provides them with motivation, confidence, and a community of women to have the conversations for girls to be able to gain the skills needed for them to pull up that chair to join the same table as men.
Till date, we have launched two cohort (and currently launching out third) and supported over 100 girls representing over 30 countries. We’ve build a global community of over 130,000 and are continuing to grow. We know it takes a village and as we look at news headlines from around the world, we know there’s a lot more work ahead of us. So, with our heads up and a deep sense of urgency, we’re marching towards the future we want to this wild ride ahead of us.