Cool Girls History
Founded in East Lake Meadows in 1989
Cool Girls was founded by Dawn Smith in 1989 in response to the desperate plight of young girls living in the East Lake Meadows housing community. At that time, East Lake Meadows was known as one of Atlanta’s most violent public housing projects. With the support of Epiphany Episcopal Church and the Urban Training Organization, Smith and a handful of dedicated volunteers set out to create a secure, supportive environment for the girls of East Lake. The adults provided academic support through tutoring, broadened the girls’ world-view through field trips, and formed a girls-only club where the girls could engage in positive, self-empowering activities that nurtured their development. The girls embraced the opportunity and named themselves “The Cool Girls of East Lake.”
We serve over 250 girls through our partnerships.
Cool Girls serves over 250 girls annually through our partnerships with 8 Title 1 schools in DeKalb and Fulton Counties. We provide motivation, encouragement, and reinforcement to help girls make smart choices that deter risky behaviors while giving guidance for positive transformation. Over our 35 year history, over 6,000 girls have come through our doors. Cool Girls develops bonds with our girls, and their parents, giving support as early as eight years old throughout womanhood.