They took risks, defied expectations, spoke out, redefined cool and made us proud to call them members and allies of our community.
Plenty of kids face bullying; Valerie Weisler decided to do something about it. “I was bullied brutally my freshman year of high school,” she recalls, “because I was so shy. Girls would put notes in my locker telling me to leave school and spread rumors that I was mute.” One day, she witnessed another classmate going through the same ordeal. “It woke me up. I went up to him and said, ‘You matter.’ He told me he was planning to take his life that day, but that I really validated him.” That night, she says, “I sat down at my kitchen table that night and Googled how to make a website.” What began as a small pro-kindness group has now grown into an international organization called the Validation Project, which works with more than 6,000 teens worldwide. “My hope is that The Validation Project becomes a household name,” she says.“I want my generation to know their worth, and know how to use that worth to shake up the world.” Visit womenofworth.com to vote for Valerie to receive $25,000 for the Project.
Check out our last honorees, Kathy Tu & Tobin Low
Last modified: October 22, 2018