Thursday, September 18, 2014

Girls’ retreat wins top prize

The “I Am Awesome! (And I Know It!)” self-esteem and empowerment retreat for young women was named a grand-prize winner in the Aviva Community Fund competition, earning a total of $45,000.
“I am so excited—a little teary, very humbled, and slightly overwhelmed,” retreat director Renée Martin-Brown enthused this morning after hearing the announcement live on CTV’s Canada AM.

The retreat, which ran for the first time Sept. 26-29 at Hanson’s Hideaway Lodge in Nestor Falls, had been vying for a share of the $1 million in prize money through a process which began back in October.
Thanks to online voting by the community, Martin-Brown’s submission made it into the semi-final—and then the final round—to become a grand-prize winner.
“Thank you to everyone who has supported the retreat throughout this process,” she remarked.
“I could not have done it without your support or your votes.
“Thank you for believing in me, but thank you so much more for believing in our community and the empowerment of our young women,” she added.
Martin-Brown will use the $45,000 to host a regional retreat this fall, looking to have upwards of 75 girls aged 10-14 attend.

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