Gun violence in Chicago is an epidemic that has plagued many young Black women in Chicago, but for one woman, she turned her pain into power. After losing her cousin to gun violence in 2017, Tragil Wade created her organization, America’s Big Sisters to help teenage girls in the city.
“When I was a teenager, it was the toughest time of my life. When the gun violence for women heightened, and I lost my cousin to it in 2016, I knew I had to do something to get these young ladies to go down a whole other path.” On Thursday, February 12th, Wade hosted a large girl empowerment conference called All Girls Matter, at the UIC student center. “This is the first of many expos geared towards young women. We have topics geared toward financial literacy, sex education, human trafficking, and more. I planned to have it during All-Star Weekend because I wanted to take over and show that even though this is a dude’s sport, women have a place here.”
Wade also stressed the importance of having partnerships and sponsors that made the expo a success. “I turned my pain into passion. I do this for my cousin, Nykea. I do this for my family. We know Nykea’s not here anymore, but we can keep pushing forward for other young women.”