My dad has been in the military for over 25 years. I have been through the hurts that come with deployment and that’s why I started “Sisterhood of the Traveling BDUs” with a friend and won a Do Something grant to help us reach our goals. BDU stands for Battle Dress Uniforms.
People have said what my dad was doing, serving and protecting the country, is illegal and immoral. I have felt the drop in self-esteem when my dad was deployed. There was a point when my dad was deployed to Afghanistan, I covered up every mirror in my house because I didn't want to look at myself because I couldn't stand the sight of my own face. I never anticipated my dad's deployment would have such an effect on me. I have always been a relatively confident individual. Though, my story is all too common among military girls.
My fellow military teen girl and partner on this project, Kaylei D, felt similar struggles. However, something productive came out of both of our stories; we recognized this is common amongst other teens going through deployments. We found a solution to help military girls fight low self-esteem, grow in leadership, and unite with those who understand their struggles. Our project will do just that. The Sisterhood of the Traveling BDUs will bring together 500 military girls from across the state for the first ever weekend conference for military girls to empower one another in sisterly support.
The first conference will take place on March 5-7, 2010 in Clovis, CA. Initially, the conference will directly impact and inspire 500 military girls to lead their communities. We want to create a Sisterhood chapter in each state. This chapter will bring together military girls from their state for a similar Sisterhood of the Traveling BDUs conference and network. We are currently creating a website to unite the Sisterhood on the web. Each chapter will have its own forum on the website, as well as a forum for each chapter to unite, inspire, and lead as a nation of military girls with a voice.