Family & Children's Agency of Norwalk has received a $10,000 grant from the Fairfield County Community Foundation Fund for Women and Girls to support the Girls' Challenge component of the agency's After School Program.

Girls' Challenge, which will enter its 10th year in the fall, is designed to encourage middle school girls in the After School Program to develop and strengthen positive peer relations, internal resources and leadership skills. The topics covered include self-esteem, body image, peer pressure, self-care and stress management. In addition, girls have an opportunity to hone their leadership skills through community service projects and exploration of personal interests and life goals. The goal is to foster team building, cooperation and communication to build leadership skills. Girls' Challenge, along with its gender-based counterpart, Boys' Council, is held on Friday afternoons during the school year.

"Family & Children's Agency is tremendously thankful for the Fairfield County Community Foundation's Fund for Women and Girls' generous support of the Girls' Challenge program," said Robert F. Cashel, president and CEO of FCA.

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The After School Program seeks to improve the lives of Norwalk's middle school youth by enabling their successful transition into high school and increasing their ability to be productive, independent young adults. The program serves 50 Norwalk middle school students who meet after school, Monday through Friday, throughout the school year at the Program's Norwalk Community College campus.