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Gadsden County grace: Local sorority hosts etiquette workshop for young ladies

A Gadsden County sorority chapter recently launched a program aimed at developing leadership skills among local girls through the all-but-forgotten art of etiquette. 

The Quincy-based Tau Theta Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., hosted its inaugural Etiquette Workshop for “P.E.A.R.L (Poised, Elegant and Respectful Leaders) Divas”  – the unique moniker given to participants, which included young ladies from around Gadsden and Leon counties in grades six through 12. The workshop focused on the “unwritten code of behaviors” that are important for young women as they navigate life. Key points and aims of the workshop included helping girls build confidence, practicing manners, instilling discipline and promoting social engagement – all while having fun. 

To help break the ice, the ladies participated in a fun activity that afforded opportunities to practice formal greetings, while meeting fellow participants. The “PEARL Divas” got a chance to strut their stuff along a makeshift modeling runway as part of a confidence-building exercise; the girls also per created personal positive affirmations and spoke them out loud, in addition to many other activities aimed at boosting confidence and self-esteem.

As one of the program’s special guests – Nhari Bryant, Miss Black Florida 2018 – put it: “[By the end of the workshop], each lady should leave feeling empowered and confident like the queen they are!”

Janay White, founder of local youth organization “Girls 2 DIVAS” added, “After speaking with the P.E.A.R.L Divas on etiquette regarding introductions, attire, phone calls, texts, social media and gossip/secrets, everyone left motivated!” 

“The young ladies developed a pledge to remind themselves that they are a lady, period,” White continued. “I truly believe our youth will do well – we just have to be in place to provide them with guidance and support. Thank you, Tau Theta Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., for creating this platform for young ladies to grow.”

During the planning phase of the workshop, several businesses and organizations were approached seeking support, and they did not hesitate to offer their services and other donations to help make this event a success for the young ladies of Gadsden and Leon Counties. 

“This gives such reassurance that we are heading in the right direction with our young girls, and our community is fully behind our efforts,” etiquette workshop chair Kalinda Pyles-Knight said. “The impact made upon the girls and their positive reactions are the fruit of our labor.”

By Kalinda Pyles-Knight

Photos courtesy Tau Theta Omega/AKA; click to enlarge