Strike a Chord: PowerPlay

Girls playing sports with PowerPlay  (Credit: PowerPlay NYC)

As part of our Strike a Chord series focused on teen mental health, WFUV's Christina Ljuljic speaks with program organizers at PowerPlay about how their programs empower girls through sports.


LJULJIC: Power Play is a New York City based organization that provides after school programs for girls to participate in sports. So girls can learn things like teamwork and leadership, through playing sports like basketball and football. 

LANE: “We aren’t a non-profit that builds athletes per say. We use the fundamentals of sport, the community, that sports bring and all the skills you get to learn from learning how to play a sport. That’s how we empower our girls to be better leaders and just bigger and better women in the future. 

LJULJIC: That’s Geralyn Lane. She runs the superstars leadership academy. It’s a program that targets girls in high school. Power Play works with many different schools across the five boroughs, to introduce sports and life skills that come with playing them. 

DANIELS: “Within soccer, if they’re kicking the ball around they’ll do activities that’s all around leadership or teamwork and still learn how to dribble or how to pass the ball and how to shoot the ball.”

LJULJIC: That’s Brandi Daniels, the senior coordinator of the Stars Series Program. This program focuses on working with girls in elementary schools. For 9 year old Mia Bella, Power Play gave her a newfound confidence.

BELLA: “I felt kind of shy and kind of like I can’t really do this but I’ll try. And after a lot of time I learned and I did.”

LJULJIC: Daniels says this kind of program can allow girls to use skills that they learn throughout their adulthood, and give them a place where they can feel supported.

DANIELS: “We create this safe space through sport to really handle life in general and to give them a platform where they’re heard as well.” 

LJULJIC: Whether or not girls continue to pursue athletic careers, Power Play is on a mission to help girls grow and improve in all aspects of their lives. 

DANIELS: “We’re trying to empower the whole girl and to make them whole.”

LJULJIC: With WFUV News, I’m Christina Ljuljic. 

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