filia’s Girls’ Advisory Board

Women* and girls* all over the world should be given better opportunities and be able to shape their own lives – this was the vision of the founders in 2001. For this reason, young women* from the age of 14 are not only allowed to have a say in the foundation’s Girls’ Advisory Council, but they are expected to do so. Girls* have a say in the allocation of funding for girls’* projects throughout Germany.

In the Girls’ Advisory Board, girls* and young women* with features or factors that could be the subject of discrimination, become decision-makers. Here, they experience a sense of belonging and cooperation at an eye level. All this strengthens and empowers them to take their own lives into their own hands. The fact that the councilors can speak for themselves and represent their work is part of their self-determination. The girls’ advisory Board was awarded the PHINEO Wirkt-Siegel Seal.

So what’s a Girls’ Advisory Board?

“The Girls’ Advisory Board, currently consist of 12 girls* advisory Board members between the ages of 14 and 25 from eight different German states (Baden-Württemberg, Berlin, Brandenburg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony, Hesse, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saxony-Anhalt). We are quite different, but that is exactly what is exciting, as we have different opinions on different topics. With these different perspectives, we select projects together that apply for filia’s project funding as part of the MädchenEmpowermentProgramm. We select – discuss – and then decide. That’s why we’re always looking for girls* and young women* who want to get engage in the work with girls* and young women*.”

What does the girls’ advisory council do?

“We meet once a year in spring, in Hamburg – during Corona Pandemic we met digitally – for a weekend, to select the best ideas for new girls* projects. Once we’ve made a project selection, we propose to filia’s Board of Trustees which girls* projects in Germany should be funded. The projects that filia supports are as diverse as we are.
Together, we have the opportunity to have a say in which projects should receive funding. Your opinion is important to us! Experience for yourself how the Girls’ Advisory Council works for a more just world where girls* and young women* have better opportunities.
In addition to the project selection meeting in the spring, there are other occasions throughout the year where we come together. For example, we also try to visit one of the projects we’ve selected to get to know the girls* and young women* who are developing the projects, we like to exchange ideas with them.”

Year after year since its foundation in 2012, the girls* on the filia girls’ advisory Council have been taking more and more responsibility: “We continue to develop ourselves, discussing socio-political issues and deciding annually on the occupation of vacant seats on the advisory Council. We choose which motions we want to discuss in detail, we present the weekend gathering of the advisory Council and so on. When girls* and young women* get engaged working for others, they also get engage with themselves. Or as Francesca from Saxony-Anhalt puts it, “You support and are thereby strengthened yourself.”

Girls* that in other contexts are subject of multiple discrimination, play the leading role

“As in the support projects of the GirlsEmpowermentProgram, girls* and young women*  that are subject of multiple discrimination play the main role in our advisory council.”

What does multiple discrimination mean?

“We want to especially address to Girls* and/or young women* who are disadvantaged for multiple reasons (multiple discrimination or intersectionally affected by discrimination), we would like to offer them the opportunity to promote their projects. These are, e.g. girls* and young women* who are disadvantaged in our society not only because they are female*, but also because they are e.g. Black, Jewish*, Muslim* or People of colour (PoC), have a migration background, have a faith that is not or hardly recognized in Germany, their families do not come from Germany, or they have a disability, or because they are discriminated against because of their body or their sexual orientation, etc. So a person to whom several such characteristics apply is affected by multiple discrimination.”

Intersectional workshop

Visit to Leipzig

filia Girls’ Advisory Board

The Girls’ Advisory Board was awarded PHINEO Wirkt Siegel.


You want to learn more about the Girls’ Advisory Board? Please contact us.

filia Girls’ Advisory Board

Nagihan Ulusoy
Program Coordinator for the GirlsEmpowermentProgram
+49 (0)40 380 381 9981