Girls Garage is a nonprofit design and building program and dedicated workspace for girls* and female-identifying youth ages 9-18.
Founded in 2013, Girls Garage is the first-ever design and building workshop for female youth in the United States. Through after-school and summer pathways, Girls Garage provides free and low-cost programs in carpentry, welding, architecture, engineering, and activist art to a diverse community of 200 girls per year. Integrating technical skills, college/career guidance, and community leadership, our programs equip girls with tools to build the world they want to see. In our workshop in Berkeley and under the guidance of our highly skilled all-female staff, we invite girls to bring their creative voice and put technical skills to work on real-world building projects that live in our community. Beyond power tools, Girls Garage is a physical space that provides a supportive and safe environment for girls to exercise voice and power. We provide 1:1 career and academic advising and workshops to develop the confidence and the communication skills to navigate the intersectional challenges facing young girls today. To date, girls have built 130 projects ranging from furniture for a domestic abuse shelter to a greenhouse for a community garden and fruit stand for an organization serving refugee families. All teen participants attend the program at no cost to their families. 66% of girls are girls of color, and 60% of girls attend Girls Garage for 3 or more years.
*“Girls” refers to gender-expansive youth (cis girls, trans girls, non-binary youth, gender non-conforming youth, gender queer youth, and any girl-identified youth).