GIRLS ROCK! IOWA CITY is a 501(c)(3) non-profit community organization dedicated to fostering creativity and self-esteem through musical instruction and expression. Through our programming, we offer female- and trans-identified youth ages 8-16 an opportunity to gain technical and musical skills that enable them to express their ideas with the support of a community that values their unique perspective. In addition to working independently, Girls Rock! works to integrate its programming with other non-profits and businesses in Iowa City in order to create a sense of community that upholds and celebrates the work of young artists; in the past, this has included performances and workshops with The Englert, the Iowa Women's Music Festival, the Iowa Youth Writing Project, Public Space One, and One Book Two Book. By providing this programming, we hope to start a conversation that challenges assumptions about what girls can do and become.
Our week-long day camp allows campers to form bands and write an original song. At the end of camp, bands perform their original songs at our showcase, an event that is open to the public and attracted more than 150 people in 2016. Songs are then recorded in the studio at the United Action for Youth, and recordings are made available to campers and the public.
In addition to our week-long camp, We offer Saturday morning workshops through the United Action for Youth. These workshops cover topics like journaling and creative writing, zine-making, and self-defense.
All Girls Rock! Iowa City programming is open to female- and trans-identified youth ages 8-16. All tuition exists on a sliding-scale and is pay-what-you-can; about 35% of campers attended camp for free in 2016, and 40% had reduced tuition. No musical experience is necessary to attend, and most campers are beginners. Any needed instruments and equipment are loaned during camp.