Girls Rock Camp St. Pete needs volunteers to help empower girls and women through music

Learn more tonight at the UUU Fellowship Center on Central Avenue.

click to enlarge Girls Rock Camp St. Pete volunteers. The non-profit needs more for this year's camp happening in July. - GIRLS ROCK CAMP ST. PETE
Girls Rock Camp St. Pete
Girls Rock Camp St. Pete volunteers. The non-profit needs more for this year's camp happening in July.

Girls Rock St. Pete needs female identifying musicians, nurses, artists, workshop leaders and “Posi Posse” crew to help them empower a new generation of girls and women through music — and interested parties can start their volunteer journey tonight at Unitarian Universalist United Fellowship Center when the non-profit holds a volunteer meeting tonight at 7:30 p.m.

Organizer Rachael Sibilia told CL that the Girls Rock international movement started a decade ago in Portland, Oregon. The Sunshine City chapter launched two years ago and served 20 campers during the week long camp at St. Pete Music Factory last year.

This years camp happens July 17-21 at the Unitarian Church of St. Pete on Mirror Lake. Girls Rock St. Pete is currently accepting camper applications on their website, girlsrockstpete.org. Cost for the camp is $50-150 sliding scale, and organizers want to double up in 2017. They will need all hands on deck to make it happen.

“Campers learned an instrument of choice, partook in workshops (self-defense, yoga, zine making, HERstory!, and healthy plants/healthy self), started a band, wrote original music AND played a show in front of 250+ people,” Sibilia wrote to CL. “All with the help of an all female identifying staff that are some of the most bad ass folks in our community.”

Silbia says that volunteer roles include instrument instructors, band coaches and workshop instructors who help with form and knowledge and guide the campers in writing music and finding their own interests in music.  A full staff of Posi Posse folks are nurses, dance instructors, confidants and encouragers who help in conflict resolution, demonstrating effective communication, and test audience for the campers.

“Our workshop leaders are some amazing folks from our small business community here in St. Pete that used knowledge in their trade to not only teach an aspect of their trade but also tying in the roles that women played in that trade/art form/etc.,” Sibilia added.

Interested parties should plan on being at Unitarian Universalist United Fellowship, but there are many ways to support including sponsorships, attending fundraising events, and sharing on social media.

“As silly as it sounds, social media plays a huge role in how people hear about us,” Silbia said.

Get more information on tonight’s volunteer meeting (plus our Q&A with Sibilia) below, and see more events on Facebook.


Girls Rock Camp St. Pete Volunteer Meeting
Unitarian Universalist United Fellowship Center, 7:30 p.m.
5721 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg.


What exactly is GRC’s mission? Will you please provide a little background on the initiative?

Girls Rock St. Pete's mission is to empower girls and women using tools of music to foster self-esteem, confidence, creativity and sense of community.

The Girls Rock movement started in Portland Oregon in 2007 and has expanded internationally since.  The St. Pete chapter was founded in December of 2015 and has been non stop ever since.  We held our first camp and GRC Showcase in July 2016.  We had 20 campers and 20 volunteers and succeeded in everything we were trying to achieve.

I feel like I could write an entire book on what this camp is about!  The ins and outs of what we do, what the campers do, and the environment that we create together is a breath of fresh air and a prime example of how we should be interacting and treating one another; there is hope for the future that is almost tangible in the company of the campers and volunteers.  We are there to create a space where girls and gender minority youths can feel safe, creative, constructive and most of all heard.  Our goal is to break down deterrents and barriers that are ingrained in all of us from a young age and to promote an environment of encouragement and buildup instead of attack and break down.  Own your feelings, own your space, and work together to make stuff happen!

You’ve already had an event, right? If so could you provide detail on how many girls you were able to serve?

Last year we held our first camp at the St. Pete Music Factory.  We had 20 campers and about 20 volunteers to help run it.

The campers came from all walks of life and ranged from 7-14 years of age.  During camp (a week long day camp) the campers learned an instrument of choice, partook in workshops (self-defense, yoga, zine making, HERstory!, and healthy plants/healthy self), started a band, wrote original music AND played a show in front of 250+ people.  All with the help of an all female identifying staff that are some of the most bad ass folks in our community.

The volunteer roles include instrument instructors, band coaches, work shop instructors and the Posi Posse.  The instrument instructors and band coaches are hands on in the musical aspect of the camp.  They are there to help with form and knowledge and guide the campers in writing music and finding their own interests in music.  Our workshop leaders are some amazing folks from our small business community here in St. Pete that used knowledge in their trade to not only teach an aspect of their trade but also tying in the roles that women played in that trade/art form/etc.

We had a full staff of Posi Posse folks who were nurses, dance instructors, confidants and encouragers.  They helped in conflict resolution, demonstrating effective communication, and test audience for the campers.

What is the goal of the volunteer meeting, and what type of person should think about attending?

We hold volunteer meetings once a month currently, but will go to every two weeks in the months leading up to camp.  We are looking for female identifying musicians, nurses, artists, workshop leaders and Posi Posse crew.  The volunteer time requirements range by position.

Our goal for 2017 is to double the number of campers we can have.  We are well on our way to 40 campers and will need the volunteers to help support us.

Are there other ways to help GRC if you can’t volunteer or attend?

There are a ton of ways to support the GRC movement. Share our stuff on social media... As silly as it sounds, social media plays a huge role in how people hear about us. Come to our fundraising events.  Our goal is to put on events that people WANT to go to and can know that their attendance is HELPING.

Sponsor us!  The more sponsors we have, the more we can do...  Sponsorship money helps us provide scholarships for campers, purchase more music equipment, provide snacks/drinks, supply needed materials for workshops, pay for camp/venue spaces, etc.

 We are a 501 (c) 3 (tax exempt/non-profit) so any donations are able to be written off for tax purposes.

About The Author

Ray Roa

Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...
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