Helping girls take charge of their lives and define the future on their terms. You can also think of it as Can University—a place where girls learn that they can. No limits. No constraints. Only opportunities to be remarkable.

Some sad facts about girls today:

  • Idaho has the 7th highest suicide rate, 44% higher than the national average.

  • According to the 2012 Blaine County Youth Assets survey, girls were twice as likely as boys to report contemplating suicide or being depressed.

  • The Blaine County Drug Coalition reports that alcohol and tobacco use in Blaine County is twice as high as the state and national levels.

  • Girls are twice as likely to drop out of sports and at an earlier age than boys.

  • Unlike boys, girls associate body image with self-esteem.  They have more anxiety over how others view their body.  This can lead to lower self-perception, disordered eating, and exercise motivated by a desire to look better to others rather than for its intrinsic value.

  • Body dissatisfaction and dietary restraints are predictors of depression in girls.

  • Almost two-thirds of girls in 5th-12th grades are dissatisfied with their body shape and want to lose weight.

  • Girls as young as 5 form negative self-images based on their weight.

If you want to help change that, here’s some good news:

  • Girls who participate in physical activities are 40% less likely to smoke, have higher levels of self-esteem, better body images, and lower levels of depression.

  • Girls who have experienced emotional trauma respond positively to physical fitness programs.

  • Girls with higher self-esteem are less likely to engage in at risk behaviors during adolescence such as drug & alcohol abuse, disordered eating, and early sexual activity.

  • Girls with higher self-esteem better relationships with adults, get better grades,  and are less depressed than girls who don’t.

And the best news, if she’s involved with Girls on the Run:

  • She has higher self-esteem;**

  • She has improved eating attitudes;**

  • She has an improved body image;**

  • She has a positive peer group setting where important issues are addressed in a productive and research based manner

  • She has positive role models in her mentor coaches.

**According to research conducted by Dr. Rita DeBate, Ph.D., MPH, CHES, assistant professor in the department of Health Behavior at UNC-Charlotte, the Girls on the Run Curricula improve girls self-esteem, body image and eating attitudes to a “statistically significant” extent.