2 Middle School Girls Are Changing the Way Their Peers See Themselves
"I hope that they think they're beautiful, that way we know we really made a difference," Genae said
Avery Burn and Genae Vanek wanted to give their female peers a reminder of what’s hard to see sometimes.
The two seventh graders at Rock Creek Middle School in Happy Valley, Oregon, noticed the girls at school having issues with low self-esteem and body image, so they decided to take action and create the Love My Reflection campaign.
After a local beauty store donated 100 compact mirrors, Burn and Vanek wrote personal messages on them to tell girls how beautiful, awesome, gorgeous and intelligent they are and handed them out at school.
“We came up with this idea because we saw other girls in our school with this problem with body image and what other people think of them,” Avery told Today. “We thought if we did a project that involves people our age, it would help us and help them.”
Their hope is to make girls become more accepting of themselves after receiving uplifting messages from their peers.
“Love My Reflection is a project based on the belief that beauty doesn’t come in a size or shape and that all girls have the right to feel beautiful, confident, strong, and amazing,” the girls wrote on their website.
They’ve noticed a positive change at school. Students are smiling and complimenting themselves more and they’ve even seen new friendships form.
“A lot of people felt more confident with themselves, which made it easier to go talk to people they don’t know and introduce themselves,” Genae told Today.
Avery and Genae admit that “Love My Reflection” has also made them feel better about themselves.
“This project helped boost my confidence to see that I can make a difference,” Genae said.
The students have been so receptive that they’ve been coming up to the girls to ask for mirrors. And other schools in the area have contacted them in hopes of getting involved. Because of the high demand, they’ve reached out to Sephora to look into getting mirror donations and have also started a GoFundMe campaign.
“I hope that they think they’re beautiful, that way we know we really made a difference,” Genae told ABC News.