RX teams up with Rêv’Elles to inspire and empower young girls

As Project Director, in charge of MIP Cancun, member of RX’s Global Race & Ethnicity Committee, and advisor to RX France’s Women Connected employee resource group, Maria Pérez-Bellière is passionate about helping women to maximise their potential in RX and our event communities.

The teenagers were participating in a flagship educational programme organised by Rêv’Elles, a French not-for-profit which supports young girls and women from working class neighbourhoods in Paris and Lyon.

‘RVL Your Potential’ is designed for all young women between the ages of 14 and 20 who join the Rêv’Elles organization. This 5-day programme (held during school holidays) is centered around coaching sessions, experiential learning and group activities. Participants build self-confidence, learn more about themselves, become acquainted with the business world, and meet inspiring role models who share their experiences and provide guidance.

Since 2013, the programme has inspired and motivated more than 4,000 participants aged 14 to 20 to pursue fulfilling careers by helping them break through social and gender glass ceilings and become the driving forces of social change themselves.

"Equal opportunities come through equality of dreams. For Rêv’Elles, every young girl, regardless of her social background, should have the ability to dream, choose, and take ownership of her own life, fully informed.”  Rev’Elles

Earlier this year RX began a funding partnership with Rev’Elles, as part of RX’s five year, $1 million commitment to support non-profit partners around the world who are working to improve inclusivity and diversity in their local communities. RX funding is enabling 180 teenagers and young women between the ages of 14 and 20 to benefit from Rev’Elles flagship programme in 2024 – which is how Maria and Delphine Guyon RX France’s HR Director, came to attend their first ‘RVL Your Potential’ event in Ile De France as coaches and role models.

“As their name suggests, Rev’Elle are all about ensuring that every young girl, regardless of her social background, has the ability to achieve her dreams,” said Maria. “Earlier this year I was honoured to participate in my first ‘RVL Your Potential’ event, along with my RX colleague Delphine. Most of the girls come to the programme with absolutely no experience of public speaking and seeing them confidently talking about their dreams and ambitions was incredible.” 

Having attended some of the workshops, Maria and Delphine were then part of a ‘jury’ which offered the girls professional feedback on their personal presentations. “Hearing their stories was humbling” Maria revealed. “Most of the girls face great hardship in their daily lives. They don’t enjoy the privilege of going off ski-ing or to the beach in their school holidays. Instead, they have made the choice to join the Rev’Elles programme and to determine their own future. It is wonderful to be able to help them on their journey.”

At the end of the programme, the girls celebrated their achievements at a Closing Ceremony where they were presented with their diplomas. Marie and Delphine were invited to bring guests along, and Marie chose to bring her family: “I wanted my 10 year old daughter, and my husband, to hear the girls’ very powerful stories. Like me they were very moved.”

Maria is keen to stress that the partnership with Rev’Elles is a two-way process. “A key part of our role as coaches and role models is to give feedback to the girls, but Rev’Elles didn’t send us into ‘RVL Your Potential’ unprepared,” she explained. “They took the time to teach us about the power of feedback and how to give it. There is a lot RX can take from this about how to give and receive candid and constructive feedback to generate positive action.”

Marie also drew inspiration from the entrepreneurial spirit of the occasion: “The ambition of the girls and their determination to build something from nothing is incredibly motivational. As an entrepreneurial event organisation there is much RX can learn from them.”

Since the event, Marie has been exchanging messages with some of the girls she met. “I am in regular communication about their studies, and what they want to do, and I am helping them with suggestions for next steps,” she said. Maria and Delphine are also spreading the word to their colleagues to encourage them to participate in the next RX-funded ‘RVL Your Partnership’ programme in April.

Over the course of the year, RX is planning to invite groups of the girls to some RX events, and to introduce them to some of the industries RX operates in. “We would also like to open up some opportunities at RX for some of the older alumni from Rev’Elles who are now of working age and anxious to pursue their careers,” enthused Maria. “The purpose of our charity funding is to give people the power to change their lives. If the end of this partnership is having some Rev’Elles alumni hired by RX wouldn’t that be perfect!”

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