By Flora Gonska:
Student-run publications often provide a raw and honest perspective on the world. Any lack in experience is often made up for by a drastically different outlook. Finding a (safe) space where you can share your stories with your peers is so important! To All the Girls is an amazing publication uplifting the voices of young people, specifically girls. Read on!
FG: Tell us all about you and your organization!
To All the Girls is a student-run publication that aims to empower the voices of young girls and provide a platform for productive discussions. Our team writes articles and informative posts on a range of topics, such as history, media, economics, and science. We produce diverse content and relay information through various mediums. Essentially, we want to create a safe space for girls to express themselves freely, voice their opinions, and fight for what they believe in! FG: Why do you think it’s important for your generation to let their voices be heard?
Our generation deserves to be heard because we are also speaking out for those before us who have been forced into silence. Today’s generation is walking on the path our elders have paved for us. We should return the favor by advocating for a better future for all; one they did not get to enjoy. In the past, minority groups and marginalized communities were forced to live under oppressive governments that punished them for the color of their skin or sexual orientation. We now enjoy many privileges that our ancestors never had access to. We have social media, a massive platform that can be used to educate and raise awareness on pivotal issues. We have access to legal rights previously denied by the state. We have a community who is more willing to grow out of the fear of change. Now, we are inching slowly towards equality. But even if the progress may feel painstakingly slow, it’s a start. FG: Are you optimistic or pessimistic about the future?
We understand that with everything going on at the moment, it is difficult to feel optimistic for a future that seems so out of reach. However, we are optimistic for what lies ahead. In recent years, we have seen a lot of positive changes that have been instrumental in our fight for equality. We are taking monumental strides to become more inclusive and to better represent marginalized groups. Even if we still have a long way to go until we can finally overcome systemic inequality, the fact that our generation is no longer staying silent in the face of injustice shows that we are working hard to reorient our misguided beliefs and strive for the better. We believe that being pessimistic about the future will only manifest into the idea that we do not have the capacity for change, which is inherently wrong. Our generation has seen firsthand how communities have come together to stand in solidarity. Even though we have seen many oppressors continue to stubbornly deny their mistakes, we have witnessed even more of us who are not afraid to learn from them and join in the fight for change. As long as we continue to fight for what is right, to speak for those who have been silenced, and to remain compassionate in a world full of hate, we have the right to be optimistic about the future that we all deserve. FG: What are the most important issues facing our world right now? And in the future? What does your organization offer that helps the world be a better place?
Our organization is relatively small compared with other platforms, but change has to start somewhere. In To All the Girls, we start by raising awareness on issues that cannot afford to be ignored any longer; these include the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Yemen, the national security law situation in Hong Kong, and more. In an age of information, ignorance is lethal. Hence, we offer a medium where people, especially the youth, can educate themselves on the important issues facing our society today. We try to not only inform our followers, but also do so in an engaging manner. When we started this publication, we wanted to share our thoughts and opinions on various topics to a wider audience; whether this meant the latest fantasy novel or the current state of our economy, our ultimate goal has always been communication. We want to inform and be informed, we want to learn and teach, we want to listen and to speak out. This student-run publication wants to connect, to interact, to share. We want to be able to give something to the public by putting a smile on your face or by stirring something inside you to take action. To All the Girls is always ready with an article or two!
FG: Did you vote in the last election?
We [did not participate] as we are not of voting age, and our entire team is currently based in Indonesia! However, we strongly urge the American youth to cast their vote and elect [leaders] who will represent their best interests. We encourage all voters to do their due diligence and research each candidate’s stance on crucial issues such as gun control, healthcare, and police reform and ensure that their beliefs align with yours. We would also like to use this opportunity to address the rampant issue of voter suppression. The American government should do a better job ensuring that all communities have equal access to voting booths. Marginalized communities, and especially BIPOC and LGBTQ+ individuals, have historically faced numerous barriers that prevent them from exercising their voting rights. Strict voter ID laws, long lines, and scarce polling booths have all exacerbated this issue, particularly in southern states. It is extremely important to speak up and urge these politicians to make a change and fulfill each citizen’s right to vote!
FG: Please tell us all about your current campaigns, projects, and endeavors. Tell everyone where to find you online and on social platforms.
Since To All the Girls is a relatively new organization, we are currently in the process of growing our editorial and creative teams! We want to publish more content and continue our mission of educating young girls on important issues. Some recent pieces include: explanatory posts on the Yemen crisis and the Hong Kong national security law, as well as a piece on an oft-overlooked chapter in Coco Chanel’s life. All of our writing is discoverable on our Instagram @toallthegirlsorg. For further inquiries, contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org!
A Cleveland, OH, native, Flora Gonska is a non-binary trans woman from a big family. She's a writer, video producer/editor, and artist. An avid supporter of the LGBTQ+ community and equality movement, she has lived in Los Angeles for three years, and she's involved in and enjoys writing on politics, the LGBTQ+ community, and life in the U.S.