TV personality talks with girls from the Willie Mae Pratt Centre about self-validation

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Minister of State for Labour and Social Development the Hon Loretta R Butler-Turner (centre) poses with TV personality, author and Access Hollywood host Shaun Robinson (left) and US Ambassador to The Bahamas Her Excellency Nicole A Avant (right) at the Willie Mae Pratt Centre for Girls.

NASSAU, Bahamas — US Ambassador Her Excellency Nicole A Avant in conjunction with the Ministry of Labour and Social Development invited TV personality, author and Access Hollywood host Shaun Robinson to visit the Willie Mae Pratt Centre for Girls, Saturday, April 24.
Ms Robinson presented all the girls at the Centre with copies of her book, “Exactly As I Am: Celebrated Women Share Candid Advice with Today’s Girls on What It Takes to Believe in Yourself”.  She also signed all of the books.

Ms Robinson said she wrote the book because so many young women think celebrities’ lives are so perfect because television makes it appear as if it is the case.  But she stressed to the girls that many times that is not the case.

She also talked about some of the issues young black women face.  “One of the things I wanted to tell you young ladies today is that oftentimes society tries to define us as black women.

Ms Robinson added, “They try to define our needs and our intelligence and tell us that they have to validate us for us to be worthwhile and I am here to tell you that we have to start validating ourselves, not to look at anyone else for our value but to know that we are special and that we matter.”

She said God gave everyone everything they need to succeed in life.

Ms Robinson also had the girls from the Centre quote excerpts from interviews she did with celebrities such as Oprah, Alicia Keys, Queen Latifah and India Arie for her book.

The idea was to get girls in the Centre to read the quotes from women who look like them and who have become successful in their careers, so that they could find inspiration and gain more confidence.

The US Ambassador said she will continue to work closely with the Government in bringing other celebrities to bring encouragement and help to others.  Ms Avant also told the girls at the Centre, “You are special, valuable and important – no matter what happens or whatever somebody tells you, you are important, valuable and beautiful.

“While I am here in The Bahamas, I am here to serve you in the best way that I can and you will always have my support,” Ms Avant said.
Minister of State for Labour and Social Development the Hon Loretta Butler-Turner acted as Mistress of Ceremony during the event at the Centre.

TV personality, author and Access Hollywood host Shaun Robinson talks to the girls at the Willie Mae Pratt Centre for Girls about validating themselves, Saturday, April 24, 2010. Seated at the head table from left: Minister of State for Labour and Social Development the Hon Loretta R Butler-Turner; US Ambassador to The Bahamas Her Excellency Nicole A Avant; Director of Social Services, Melanie Zonicle and Deputy Director Rehabilitative/Welfare Services, Marva Russell-Minns.