Young Women in Excellence is a yearly event that we have for the young women at church (ages 12 to 18). It is a celebration of a program that we have in our church called "Personal Progress". Personal Progress is a system of setting and achieving goals focused on eight core values: faith, divine nature, individual worth, knowledge, choice and accountability, good works, integrity, and virtue. Each value has several value experiences to complete and then a ten hour value project. There are suggestions outlined within the program for value projects, but the young women can come up with their own ideas as well and get those approved by a leader. Once all the required value experiences and a project for each of the core values has been completed, the young woman earns a medallion that she can wear.
We used our Young Women in Excellence as an opportunity to feature some of the 10 hour value projects that the girls have been working on in the past year. Our theme was Personal Progress County Fair. Have you ever gone to the fair and looked at the different displays and projects that people have entered: pies, quilts, scrapbook pages, 4-H projects, home bottled fruits and vegetables, etc.? That was the working thought behind the theme. Each young woman set up a display and told us about what she has been doing. Some of the different projects they have been working on are: learning to sew (divine nature), learning Japanese (knowledge), putting together blessing bags to distribute to the homeless (good works), participating in color guard (individual worth), and personal fitness--learning about diet and exercise and learning to cook healthy foods (several different values fit here. I can't recall at the moment which value was the focus of the project). I took pictures of all the displays but apparently the camera I was using is defunct so I don't have any of those to share. I wish I had blue ribbons for each of those displays though. The young women have been working hard!
The program was short and sweet. We had an opening hymn, opening prayer and I explained the theme of the day. I had come up with an acronym to go along with our theme: FAIR. I talked about how FAIR is the ticket to success with the personal progress program--Faith+Action+Integrity=Results. The young women each took a minute to explain what her project was about and then we turned the time over to the bishop for a few short remarks before the closing song and prayer. After that we stacked the chairs to give people room to move around and look at the different displays and get some fair food-inspired refreshments.
|Blue Ribbon mini pies: we had apple, blueberry, lemon meringue, and peach raspberry.|
|Caramel and apples, soft pretzels, popcorn and corn dogs!|
|Farm fresh vegetables and dip.|
The decorations and menu for the event were a lot of fun. A couple of my favorite touches were the paper medallions and the paper chain made out of tickets. I brought a granny square afghan and a pig from my old high school collection to watch over the drink table.
Our menu was:
--Mini corn dogs
--Fresh vegetables and dip
--Apples and Caramel
--Spiced nuts, caramels and mini Reese's peanut butter cups
--Mini pies (blueberry, apple, peach raspberry, lemon meringue)
--Cotton candy in little bags for favors
--Lemonade and water for drinks (I took a picture of the cute drink table on the broken camera too--good thing I had two cameras and used both so that I at least had some pictures to share here)
The food was a huge hit. I really had no idea how well pretzels and corn dogs would be received but we had hardly any food left afterwards--a few vegetables and some apple slices. I was really pleased with how everything came together. It was great to have so many people there to support our young women.
Here's the invitation I made for the event:
To see more of my inspiration you can check out my Pinterest board here.