That’s SMART: Helping Iowa Girls Find Honest, Accurate Information About Womanhood & Growing Up

A special thank you to 2021 Grant Partner Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa for writing this guest post. To learn more about this phenomenal organization, visit

Where do girls today get information about womanhood? Or straight answers about life and society? Usually the answer is friends, and more than likely—social media. These often unreliable sources can leave girls confused and worried about the world they live in and what the future holds. Thanks to organizations like the Iowa Women’s Foundation that focus on investing in young women, the number of opportunities for girls to connect with positive programs is increasing.

The SMART Girls program at Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa offers female Club members ages 8 – 18 the opportunity to hang out weekly with girls of a similar age and have candid conversations with trained and caring Club staff. Topics include self-esteem, stressors, healthy relationships, body image, mental and physical health, and current events. Hands-on activities and guest speakers keep girls engaged in this evidence-based program developed by Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Career exploration and academic support helps Club girls eventually find lucrative employment, attain financial independence, and reach their goals. By offering girls access to resources and mentors during the complicated journey of growing up, we support generations of healthy and self-assured young women in our communities.

With the support of IWF, Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa was able to offer SMART Girls programming to 922 girls in 2021.


More About Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa

Interested in a holistic approach to afterschool care for your child or teen? Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa has eight Clubs across the Greater Des Moines area. Kiddos ages 5-18 are welcome for as little as $10 a year for membership. Club is provided every day afterschool, until 6 pm—with a snack provided.

 Club members benefit from highly-trained staff who provide a full schedule of academics, arts, recreation, STEM and specialty groups. Call 515-242-7925 to sign up today!