Aerie’s 2021 changemakers

2021 marks the second year of Aerie’s Real Changemakers campaign. 23 women won $ 20,000 from the brand, which will also provide them with coaching in public relations, marketing strategies, budgeting and impact reporting. These women will join the already impressive list of changemakers from 2020.

According to Jennifer Foyle, President and CEO of Creative, AE & Aerie, “Aerie was one of the first brands to create a platform that sparked a movement of positivity and self-esteem. We have always believed that REAL change happens when we work together and empower each other. She went on to say, “As an industry leader, we have a responsibility to inspire the next generation of change makers. We are proud to award #AerieREAL Changemaker Grants to 23 women, who are the driving force behind 20 diverse causes and projects, to help them touch the lives of people everywhere.

Here are Aerie’s 2021 Changemakers:

  • Ambika Rajyagor is the co-creator of Three Little Ghouls, a Halloween-themed children’s book that focuses on empowering next-generation readers. Being a first generation American Indian and disability rights activist inspired Ambika to advocate for representation in her community.
  • Becca Damante is the co-founder of Pride and Less Prejudice, a non-profit organization that provides LGBTQ books to classes of Kindergarten to Grade 3 children in the United States and Canada. Becca struggled to come to terms with her sexuality when she was younger, so her focus is on spreading a positive LGBTQ + portrayal to children in a similar position.
  • Bethany Klapwyk is the founder of ‘Tender Farmer’, which offers wellness coaching, courses and programs to create a sense of community among farmers and support them in their well-being and personal development. After spending a decade as an organic farmer, Bethany saw how many farmers had health issues and was inspired to provide these services.
  • Karen Zhao and Mylan Young created the SMILE Clinic, a mobile dental clinic in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, which provides free dental care to people with physical, social or financial barriers.
  • Sara Miller is the founder of SODA: Student Organ Donation Advocates, a nonprofit organization that has trained 10,000 students and registered over 1,300 to become organ donors. Sara became passionate about organ donation when she lost her sister at a young age and believes that advocating for students can reduce organ shortage.
  • Anya Bhopa is the co-founder of The Canadian Courage Project, a non-profit organization that offers wellness workshops and starter kits for homeless youth and pets. Anya hopes to support the younger ones as they move from homeless shelters to independent living.
  • Ava Suppelsa is the founder of Hope on the Row, a non-profit organization serving members of the local homeless community around the Music Row area in Nashville, TN by providing fresh meals, clothing, supplies and A support.
  • Kylee McGrane is the founder of A Moment Of Magic, a non-profit organization that empowers college students to deliver creative programs to children with medical vulnerabilities. The vision of Kylee’s organization is to give children in need a moment of happiness and laughter through the help of students who dress up as characters.
  • Shreya Mantha is co-founder of Foundation For Girls, a nonprofit organization that economically empowers single homeless mothers and supports their children with resources, connections and referrals. Shreya believes her ability to care for and coach these women is a critical foundation for their financial independence.
  • Deesha Panchal is the founder of Georgia Youth Leaders, a youth organization that connects change agents with young people through volunteerism. Deesha’s organization strives to remove barriers and motivate the next generation of leaders to make a difference in their communities.
  • Aria Cataño is the founder of Water Drop LA, a self-help group that helps tackle the inaccessibility of water in LA Skid Row and surrounding areas.
  • Zoe Jenkins is the founder of DICCE, an organization that builds empathy and equity through a Generation Z-led program on diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism.
  • Rachel Rutter is the founder of Project Libertad, a non-profit organization that empowers newcomer immigrant youth and their families in Philadelphia by providing essential youth-led, youth-centered legal and social services.
  • Lauren Abercrombie is the founder of Inclusion Fusion, an organization that helps people with special needs in the Las Vegas community develop life and social skills.
  • Liz Plachta is the co-founder and executive director of Ruby’s Rainbow, a non-profit organization that provides scholarships to teens with Down’s syndrome to enable them to pursue post-secondary education. Liz has wanted to contribute to the Down syndrome community since the birth of her daughter Ruby.
  • Alesha Thomas is the founder of Adaptive Parent Project (APP), a support network for parents with disabilities to share their experiences, ideas and resources with other parents.
  • Candy Calderon is the founder of Glow Wellness Tour, an educational platform, community, and health and wellness event series that focuses on BIWOC (black, brown, indigenous and women of color). Candy has inspired thousands of women to embrace their physical and emotional well-being on their own terms.
  • Emily Weatherhead is the founder of Musicians Found, an organization that makes musical instruments and programming more accessible to communities. Emily’s organization connects seniors with music and music programs.
  • Trendy Foston is the founder of The Honey Block, an energy company that offers online programming courses for BIPOC in South Central LA.
  • Victoria Ifan is the Founder and CEO of Legacies Live On Inc, a non-profit organization that provides support to young people in mourning and enables people to honor the legacy of their loved one with purpose. Victoria was motivated to help young people grieving after the death of her father.

About Robert Young

Robert Young

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