An easy way for me to reach out and show hospitality to young people is through my Balcony Girls group. It is an exceptional group of 8 girls that come together after school, to discuss girls’ issues, relationships and God. We’ve met for almost three years now. I was inspired to change the name of the group (prior name Faithgirlz) this year to Balcony Girls, as I was moved by a book, over 20 years ago, that changed my thinking on friendships. The book was called Balcony People by Joyce Landorf Heatherly.

Our mission statement this year is: Build one another up; don’t tear down.

This week, we learned the value of affirmation through role-playing and discussions about negative vs positive comments, and how they stick in your minds. We also learned about the power of standing up to a bully, since bullying is prevalent talk in the Coughlin household these days, with Paul’s, No More Jellyfish, Chickens, or Wimps just out.

Frankly, we could have sat for 2 hours and just talked. The girls loved our time together more than the craft or the snack! (Snack this week: cupcakes made in ice cream cones.)

Our discussion has soul value and the girls really feel it. We also laugh our heads off, as the girls find it very funny as we role-play together. I make sure that every girl participates and they really get into it.

One little girl told me this week, “Sandy, I learned so much today!”

I won’t forget those words. I could see it in her eyes.

Next time we meet we’re heading to the Ginger Roger’s Craterian Theatre where we get to experience the “balcony” and incorporate it into our study. The girls don’t know about it yet — shhhhh, it’s a surprise!

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.