Village Event to Honor Women and Girls, Raise Money for Life-changing Services

After two years of celebrating virtually, The Village for Families & Children’s annual Girl Within event will return in person on Friday, December 2 at the Connecticut Convention Center.

Girl Within raises funds to support a range of The Village’s programs and services that help women and girls in Greater Hartford who have been affected by trauma to heal and build resilience, confidence and independence. Now in its twenty-second year, Girl Within has raised nearly $1.6 million since its inception.

The event will feature powerful stories from Village clients, and guests will hear from this year’s honorees, who have made impactful contributions to support women and girls across Greater Hartford.

The Village has named Jennifer Steadman, Executive Director for Aurora Women and Girls Foundation, as the 2022 Girl Within Woman of the Year in honor of her advocacy for women and girls. As Executive Director for The Aurora Foundation, she has produced cutting-edge research, fused vital partnerships and championed numerous economic mobility efforts to advance opportunities for women and girls across the region.

“We are honored to recognize Jennifer as our 2022 Girl Within Woman of the Year for her extraordinary leadership and advocacy in service to women and girls,” said Village President and CEO Galo Rodriguez. “Jennifer is an exemplary leader and a fierce advocate. Through her work at The Aurora Foundation, she motivates and inspires young women to realize their potential, and she is instrumental in creating opportunities that transform the lives of women in our region.”

Local leader Shaniece Nugent was named 2022 Young Woman of the Year in recognition of her stellar fundraising efforts, which help provide 30,000 meals annually to aid vulnerable populations facing food insecurity. She also co-founded an organization that educates her community on injustices impacting communities of color.

Past honorees include:

  • Paula S. Gilberto (2021)
  • Racquel L. Santana (2020)
  • Estela López (2019)
  • Carrie Firestone (2018)
  • Francine Christiansen (2017)
  • Alison Coolbrith (2016)
  • Carle Mowell (2015)
  • JoAnn Price (2014)
  • Linda Carlson (2013)
  • Sallie Norris (2012)
  • Janet Bailey (2011)

To register to attend the event visit

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