ING-Girls Investment Challenge

Girls Inc. of Greater Houston is one of two Girls Inc. organizations to join the ING-Girls Inc. Investment Challenge — an innovative nationwide program that gives girls practical, hands-on investing experience while allowing them to keep their gains in the form of college scholarships. 

With the help and guidance of trained Girls Inc. staff and ING employee volunteers, a team of 12 girls, ages 12-18, build and manage diversified, real-time portfolios as part of an integrative investment and economic-literacy curriculum. After three years, gains are split between scholarships for higher education and the local Girls Inc. organization.

Launched in 2009, the ING-Girls Inc. Investment Challenge was created with the goal of combining the expertise of Girls Inc. in educating girls and the financial knowledge of the ING Foundation to help girls attain economic self-sufficiency. The initiative currently includes teams from Girls Inc. organizations in Alameda County (CA), Atlanta, Denver, Holyoke (MA), Los Angeles, and New York City. The 2011 expansion also includes Girls Inc. of the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area.

“Girls Inc. of Greater Houston is honored to be one of two Girls Inc. organizations selected out of 97 affiliates to participate in the 2011 ING-Girls Inc. Investment Challenge,” said Rita Kirkup, executive director of Girls Inc. of Greater Houston. “We’re committed to helping girls build the capabilities for a responsible, confident and economically self-sufficient adulthood, and this initiative is a perfect example.”

“We are thrilled to bring the ING-Girls Inc. Investment Challenge to Girls Inc. of Greater Houston,” said Judy Vredenburgh, President and CEO of the national Girls Inc. organization. “Today, financial skills and economic self-sufficiency are more important than ever. The Investment Challenge allows us to build on the financial empowerment work of our Economic Literacy program to provide a one-of-a-kind experience that is driven by the girls and their talents.”

Girls Inc. delivers life-changing programs that inspire girls to be strong, smart, and bold. Research-based curricula, delivered by trained professionals, equip girls to achieve academically; lead healthy and physically active lives; manage money; navigate media messages; and discover an interest in science, technology, engineering, and math. The network of local Girls Inc. nonprofit organizations serves 150,000 girls ages 6 - 18 annually at over 1,400 sites in 350 cities across the United States and Canada. Learn more about our programs and advocacy at

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