The Emancipation Garden bandstand was filled with the gentle clinking of teacups and the buzz of women empowering the next generation of leaders as the Bowsky Leading Ladies club enjoyed a tea party hosted by members of the Iota Phi Lambda Sorority, Inc on January 19.
The Bowsky Leading Ladies club was established last school year at Yvonne Milliner Bowsky Elementary School, and provides girls in grades 3-5 an avenue to learn about self-esteem, self-awareness, personal accountability, etiquette, life skills, interpersonal relationship skills, and leadership skills.
Club Advisor and School Counselor Tamika DeWindt said that at Bowsky Elementary, faculty and staff work to cultivate the whole child and the club serves to help girls excel academically, personally, and professionally.
“The tea party allowed the Bowsky Leading Ladies an opportunity to practice some of the etiquette skills they have been learning, such as appropriate posture and decorum at a dining event,” explained teacher, Gabrielle Querrard, who is also a club advisor.
At the tea party, students and their mothers enjoyed conversation with Iota Phi Lambda members, as the young girls practiced their etiquette and conversational skills. The students were gifted teacup sets, personalized activity books, and life-long friendships from the sorority members.
“We are fostering a sense of leadership and community involvement in these young ladies, starting within the Bowsky community and then branching out to the wider community,” DeWindt said.
And speaking of giving back to their school, Bowsky’s Leading Ladies are already doing that through their involvement in PBIS initiatives, campus beautification initiatives, and peer mentorship. The tea party allowed the group to see and interact with women in their community who are helping to create a better Virgin Islands.