Introduce yourself and profession to our readers:
Crystal M. Clark-Chatman is the Founder and Director of Operations of Beautiful Spirited Women 501c3, a girls mentoring program who provides community services opportunities and workshops. She is a wonderful wife and mother of 3.
Beautiful Spirited Women, 501c3 has been established since November of 2010 and currently have 7 chapters throughout the USA. Crystal started her non-profit organization because she found that there was a need in her community which she grew up in as well as surrounding communities in Memphis, TN. Being someone that she needed when she was younger, motivated her even more to start this program.
Beautiful Spirited Women, 501c3 started with just 10 members at the IHOP on Elvis Presley in Memphis, TN. In 2011, Crystal was working a full time job, staying in another city and managed to partner with great companies in the City of Memphis such as American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, and Memphis Food Bank just to name a few. Beautiful Spirited Women also partnered with Green Dot Public Schools System, Memphis City Schools and Shelby County Schools systems to assist with operations after school programs with girls. Beautiful Spirited Women will be celebrating 7 years of community service in November.
Crystal is a proud native of Memphis, TN. She is an alumnus of Lane College in Jackson, TN & University of Phoenix, in Cordova, TN. She is an active member of the Clarksville Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. as Sgt. & Arms, Policies & Procedures, and Delta Gems team member.
What inspired you to pursue this area of interest?
My past was very difficult. I suffered with low self–esteem, lack of confidence, being bullied and there were no teen mentoring programs around that my mother knew about. Resources were very limited and everything was costly. I made a free program so parents will not have any stress especially with all the other things that is going on in everyone's personal lives. We offer free workshops and community service opportunities for girls ages 4-19 years of age.
What advice would you share with those interested in a similar pursuit?
The best advice I can give, there is nothing to it but to do it. You must have the desire, a heart to give back in your community and to mentor young ladies. If giving back to the youth is truly on your heart to do so, do not take no for an answer. You must never allow a distraction to pull you down. Keep pushing until you have reached the finished line.
Discuss a professional challenge and how you overcame it:
The greatest challenge I've faced in my career to date has to be the key role I played in helping my non-profit tackle the percentage of decrease of teen pregnancies . Our non-profit was undoubtedly ill-prepared for the advent and impact of the recession; our spreadsheets through excel were just too weak. After a spate of redundancies, those of us who were left faced an uphill struggle to keep the percentage down and programs running on a continuous basis. I learned a great deal from the experience. It was a great challenge. While we certainly did have a tough time of it, we successfully kept in touch with girls on a weekly basis, monthly programs, and health related programs that will be persistent and measureable to keep our numbers down as low as possible.
What is next for your brand/business in 2017?
The goals we have set are to become nationwide over the next 5 years and to have a teen explosion for girls with at least 1,000 teens in attendance. We will also be creating a restoration home for girls to come and receive the essential tools they need to become entrepreneurs and trained professional classes to help build their self-esteem, brand, education, and finances at a early age.
How can readers connect with you online and through social media.
Every parent can visit our website at www.beautifulspiritedwomen.org to sign up their daughter/s. We only have chapters in Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Illinois, & Texas. If you have questions or concerns, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, once it is sent, a representative will contact you within 24-48 hours. You can also find us on Facebook: Like our page at Beautiful Spirited Women or add us as a friend at bswblessings. We also have an IG page @bswteens as well as twitter @bswteens!