The mission of Desire to Aspire is to enrich the lives of underprivileged and minority girls and women. We instill in young ladies the importance of sisterhood and personal responsibility, etiquette and culture, and social awareness and advocacy -- all while building self-awareness and self-management skills. We teach young ladies responsible decision-making and relationship skills in order to avoid high-risk behaviors such as drugs, alcohol and violence. We also provide educational services and resources for women to ensure that they lead successful careers and healthy lives, socially, emotionally, and physically.
400+ mentees impacted
We have touched the lives of over 500 girls over the past 7 years. We have provide them with yearlong access to mentors and diverse life experiences.
6+ schools served
We partner with awesome schools who understand the importance of mentorship and the impact of social emotional learning skills.
Everyone's Talking About D2A
Read our testimonials and see why:
"Our mentees have really grown over the course of these months. I am so proud of each and every one of them. They have opened up more and really started to respect themselves and each other."
"Ever since being a part of D2A, I have enjoyed my Wednesdays. The entire day runs smoothly knowing that I will be returning to the school and working to build a group of girls' stability in educational and even emotional ways."
"Desire to Aspire is a wonderful mentoring organization. My Wednesday's were always the best day out of the week, because that's when we got a chance to spend time with and mentor our girls. We always made sure that the girls got a good message out of whatever activities we did with them. I think I enjoy mentoring the girls so much because I did not have a mentor when I was their age. Its very important that we build our girls up to be the best women they can be."
"I love working with the girls. It's a really great experience!"
"Seeing the girls every week and seeing them grow is amazing"
"I will continue D2A because I love the girls we mentor."
Stacy A. Stewart, M.A.
I am ecstatic that you decided to stop by and find out what Desire to Aspire is all about! This organization believes in creating the women leaders of tomorrow, cultivating a community of service minded change agents, and providing personal enrichment through exposure to novel activities. Our organization is powered by dedicated mentors, volunteers, and supporters like you! I hope that you continue browsing our site and if you have any questions or suggestions please contact us.
Meet The Board
Amanda L. Henderson
I am currently pursuing a Ph.D at University of Illinois-Chicago in Biological Sciences with a concentration in Ecology. I love Desire to Aspire because it instills in them the importance of social advocacy and introduces youth to diverse career paths at a crucial developmental period. I am excited to see D2A launch its second Women's Empowerment Summit.
Maria C. Maysonet
I am a Senior Marketing and Sales Analyst in the retail industry. I love Desire to Aspire because it provides young girls a safe place to discover real solutions to real problems. I am excited to see the untapped potential of D2A explode into a worldwide phenomenon, helping girls across the globe discover their inner power.
Bobbie A. l. Woods
I am currently pursuing my Masters of Science in Nursing at DePaul University. I love Desire to Aspire because it creates a space for young girls to discover who they are and equips them with the tools for success. I am most excited about scaling D2A to an international level. Girls from different cultures and backgrounds will be provided with the opportunity to express themselves in a safe space with supportive role models.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: How often do mentoring sessions occur?
A: Desire to Aspire mentors meet with our mentees once a week for an hour to an hour and a half. Mentees also participate in exposure outings throughout the school year.
Q: What types of activities do you all do with the girls?
A: All of our lessons are based on our programs seven tenets, that focus on the socio-emotional development of our youth. We believe that having active and engaging lessons are the essential for the diverse learning styles of our youth.
Q: How much does the program cost participants?
A: This program costs its participants $0. It is important that this program stays free so that all of the girls who want to be involved in our programming are able. This is why support from people like you is so important! Donate today!
Q: Who serves as mentors and how are they selected?
A: Local college students serve as mentors to our mentees. These women are service minded and have been thoroughly interviewed prior to their entry into our organization.
Q: How are youth selected?
A: Youth are often selected by school officials as they are better able to identify the girls who would be interested in participating and benefit the most. All girls at are partner schools are eligible to participate. If you are a parent interested in having your daughter participate, please reach out to your school or send us an email.