You ask, we answer! Here are the queries we receive most often along with helpful information and links. If you scan the topics below and don’t find what you are looking for, send an email to email@example.com and we’ll reply as soon as we can.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How can I promote your programs?
We would love for you to share our programming with your friends! Tag us on Instagram or share our posts. Make a donation. Purchase our merchandise from our online shop. Connect us with your company as a corporate sponsor. Bring a group in for a corporate workshop. Leave us a review on Facebook or Google. Thank you!
- Where do my donations go?
Your donations go directly to our programs and support of free and low-cost design and build workshops for girls. We use all donor dollars to fund things like lumber, steel, hardware, Sharpies, snacks, cleaning supplies, and instructor stipends. Over half of our girls attend for free or low-cost. 100% of teen girls attend at no cost to their families.
You can read all about our impact to date in our impact statement (pdf)!
- Are you a nonprofit and are donations tax deductible? What is your Tax ID number?
Yes! All donations are 100% tax-deductible as we are a registered 501c3 nonprofit.
Please note that Girls Garage’s official legal name is Project H Design DBA Girls Garage, Tax ID: 26-1703034
- Are you going to expand? Can I open a Girls Garage?
For now, we do not have plans for expansion or franchising, as we are focused on expanding the Girls Garage program within our geographical context. We believe it’s super important for us to have a “placeness” and 1-to-1 relationships with our local girls first and foremost.
Girls Garage was founded by expert female builders and educators and a commitment to supporting young girls through great design/build work. To do something similar in your own community, we recommend that you gather skilled local partners to help you articulate the goals and strategy for your programs and who can lead programs safely. We also suggest reaching out (personally and through social media) to local companies and organizations, community spaces that host workshops (and may already have an engaged audience), and hardware stores to begin building relationships with potential partners and clients for projects!
- Do you have recommended resources for building projects?
There are a number of national organizations that provide projects and lesson plans for building projects, such as the National Building Museum, The Cooper Hewitt Museum’s Educator Resource Center, Instructables, The Exploratorium’s Tinkering Studio, and Home Depot’s DIY Project Database. Girls Garage: Use Any Tool, Tackle Any Project, and Build The World You Want To See is basically Girls Garage in book form. It aggregates a decade of building instruction, including hundreds of tools, dozens of skills, and instructions for several complete projects. These are all great resources for individuals looking for their next project or organizations looking to create a builder curriculum.
- Can I visit the space? Do you have open makerspace hours?
We don’t schedule official public tours, but we can occasionally accommodate interested visitors pending our youth programming schedule. Our Annual Gala and Make-A-Thon in November, our Holiday Gift Sale in December, and our Garage Sale in April are all great opportunities to visit our space when we are open to the public. We also host groups such as schools, organizations, or professional development cohorts for visits with specific purposes.
- Can I volunteer at Girls Garage?
Girls Garage does not usually have volunteers in our youth workshops due to the safety and safeguarding of our girls; we instead have consistent trained staff and instructors. We do occasionally seek volunteers for things like events, organization, and marketing and promotion. If you’re interested in these opportunities, you can fill out our volunteer questionnaire.
- Are you hiring?
We are not currently hiring, however, if you have experience working with youth AND a creative skillset (welding, carpentry, screen printing, etc), we’d love to know more and keep your resume on file for future opportunities. Our instructor positions are generally after-school and summer jobs, ranging from 2 hours per week (after-school) to week-long summer camps (9am-4pm, 5 days a week). Send us your resume and an introductory email to firstname.lastname@example.org!
- Do you do speaking engagements?
Yes! Our founder, Emily Pilloton, does 10-20 keynote presentations per year, has done a TED talk, presented to the Obama Administration, and been on The TODAY Show, TIME, Colbert Report, and CNN. She loves sharing the Girls Garage story and discussing the potential of a future built by empowered girls and the impact that fearless builder girls have on their communities. Emily would be happy to talk with you about speaking opportunities; email her directly at email@example.com.
- Do you do co-ed workshops?
Our youth programming is for girls and she/her and they/them youth only. For our public events such as our Garage Sale and Holiday Gift Fair, we are open to all. We also offer co-ed corporate workshops for adults, and the occasional “all families” weekend workshop.
We love working with groups who are interested in building and bonding! We offer various workshop options, including screenprinting, planter-box building, toolbox fabrication, and projects in the community. You can check out the offerings and pricing structure here or contact us to help come up with a custom experience.
- Do you conduct workshops for adult women?
We have offered workshops for adult women in the past, but our priority is to provide high-quality youth programming. We are working on expanding our adult offerings soon, so we encourage you to join our mailing list to hear more as these opportunities are announced! If you’re a mom or auntie or big sister, we do offer “mother”/daughter workshops on some weekends. For other adult women programming in the area, we recommend Lower 48, Dykes with Drills, And I Built It With My Vagina, Double Union, Frailty Myths, and The Crucible.
- Do you provide scholarships?
Yes, 58% of girls who attend Girls Garage attend for free or at low-cost. All of our teen programming during the school year and summer (9th to 12th grade) is no-cost. For scholarships for our paid after-school programs, please apply online using our application form. For our paid summer programs, the scholarship application is embedded in the lottery process.
- Do you take material donations?
We would love to chat with you around your material donations! Full-size lumber, hardware, and hardware store gift cards are particularly helpful. Our space is limited, and we try to only stock the building materials we are using for current projects, which limits the donations we can accept. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss in-kind donations.
You can make a purchase from our Amazon Wish List.
- Do you build custom projects?
We are always looking for nonprofit partners for whom our girls can design and build high impact, real-world projects. If you are connected to a local organization with a tangible need (i.e. bookshelves, play structures, planter boxes, etc), we would love to talk to you! We do not take on personal, residential, or commissions for private individuals.
- Can you come to my town?
Because we’re such a small staff and so focused on our programs in Berkeley, it’s hard for us to do traveling workshops. We’re totally unavailable for traveling workshops over the summer, but we’re open to discussing on-the-road programming during the school year as our schedule allows!
- Can you recommend other builder programs and workspaces?
The Bay Area offers fantastic programs, such as The Crucible, Camp Galileo, Camp 510, Project Ember, Tinkering School, Techbridge, Girls Who Code, Camp Edmo, Curious Jane, Children’s Creativity Museum, Bay Area Discovery Museum, Girls In Engineering, and ID Tech.
Around the US, you should look into Girls Build (Portland), DIY Girls (Los Angeles), Rosie’s Girls (Vermont), Tools and Tiaras (New York City), Saw Horse Revolution (Seattle), Women, Design, Build (Austin), and Chicago Architecture Center (Chicago).
Email email@example.com with other amazing organizations so we can continue to build this list of recommendations.
- When does your registration go live?
We recommend signing up for our newsletter so that you can receive timely notifications of program dates! After-school programs fill up very quickly, so marking your calendar for the on-sale date is important. Our program registrations open on the following schedule:
February 1: Summer registration / applications open
February 15: Builder Bootcamp lottery applications due
March 1: Young Women’s Design and Building Institute applications due
After-School Program Registration
March 1: Spring after-school program registration opens online
August 1: Fall after-school programming registration opens online
December 1: Winter after-school programming registration opens online
Weekend Workshops registration opens as new programs are posted
- I tried to register my daughter and it sold out in 2 minutes! I’m on the waitlist - what next?!
First, we recognize that having a wait list is a good problem, because it means our program is super popular. However, we also know what a bummer it can be and that it is a problem for many families who are trying to make plans! Please know that we are always working to find ways to accommodate more girls, including adding weeks to our summer camp (which we did this year) and considering different schedules and structures. Please also know, though, that one of the most special things about Girls Garage is the intimacy of our programs and the relationships between girls and skilled, committed female instructors who do not change from year to year. Our instructors have over 60 years of experience amongst the 7 of them, and our 5:1 ratio ensures that all girls are safe, acknowledged, and respected.
We often get asked “how far down the wait list do you think you’ll go?” This is hard to predict, but don’t lose hope. In some years, by the time we go down the list, many folks have dropped off or scheduled another program. For summer camp, we usually see folks having to cancel starting in May. Please note that for our teen programs that require an application (Young Women’s Design and Building Institute and Protest + Print), we only accept girls who apply within the application window, and do not keep a waitlist.