HAMMOND | The Boys & Girls Club of Northwest Indiana - and a group of special young women - owe a special thank you to community volunteer Norma Serrano-Williams.
On a recent Saturday, Excellence by Design owner Serrano-Williams volunteered her time, along with a few members of her crew, to mentor a group of five young ladies from the Hammond Boys & Girls Club, teaching them how to paint.
These young women participate in the Keystone Club program at the Boys & Girls Club, a program that enhances girls physical and emotional well-being to increase their self-esteem. Their project was to paint the tech center at the Hammond club.
Serrano-Williams has taken her painting business to another level and started a new nonprofit organization, Girls & Paint.
“This has meant the world to me. I was honored to be part of these girls' lives, honored to sow something fabulous into their lives. Today I can check something great off my bucket list,” Serrano-Williams said.
Girls & Paint mentors young women who may come from disadvantaged circumstances and tries to make a positive impact on their future while teaching them a valuable skill.
“This experience today was fun and exciting. I learned how to paint and how to respect myself as a young lady,” said Cashmere Collins, 15, of the SMART Girls Program at the Hammond Boys & Girls Club.
“We cannot thank Norma and her crew enough for helping these girls discover their own self worth. It’s good to see young women building careers that are outside the ‘box,’ said Boys & Girls Club of Northwest Indiana Interim Vice President of Development and Marketing Robert Montgomery.
"Nearly 70 percent of the households in communities like Gary and Hammond are headed by women; they are the backbone of our society. We need more programs like this one to help enhance the quality of life in Northwest Indiana.”