The staff behind Girls Empowered at Mountain Shepherd are on a mission to empower middle school girls to thrive in the back country and throughout adolescence, despite all the challenges each situation brings! Roanoke’s WDBJ 7 shined their spotlight on GEMS earlier this summer to share this mission with the public. The GEMS program sprouted from other Mountain Shepherd Survival School courses for adult women and college students. What makes GEMS so unique is that it was created as an opportunity for younger girls, shy or outgoing, outdoorsy or “indoorsy,” to join forces and support each other in a girls-only outdoor learning environment where they develop courage, confidence, and compassion. To find out more about the mission of GEMS, see WDBJ’s coverage here!