Bay Area Girls Rock Camp is a nonprofit organization that empowers girls through music, promoting an environment that fosters self-confidence, creativity and teamwork. BAGRC challenges gender stereotypes, encourage collaboration and tolerance among peers, and provides a comfortable space for people of all backgrounds to express themselves. Through music lessons, workshops, group activities and performance, girls acquire skills that help guide them throughout their lives.
In July 2008, our inaugural summer camp crashed, banged, shredded and wailed at the Julia Morgan School for Girls in Oakland with 65 girls, 40 volunteers, and a sold-out showcase at Bottom of the Hill.
In 2009, our summer program doubled in size, with two sessions serving a total of 130 girls. We debuted two new programs that year - Girls Rock After School Program (GRASP) and Ladies Rock Camp (LRC) - and an amazing group of dedicated volunteers transitioned to become year-round staff members.
In 2010, 160 girls and 80 volunteers came to summer camp. GRASP tripled in size, serving 60 girls, and LRC held its second session.
In 2011, due to growing demand for our programs, we added a third session of summer camp, allowing 230 girls to write over 40 original new songs together. GRASP and LRC continued to grow, and we debuted a new program for teens: the Advanced Music Program (AMP), held on Saturdays in the fall.
The inspiration to start a Girls Rock Camp came from Portland, Oregon, home of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Camp for Girls. The first camp of its kind, the RNRC4G opened its doors in 2001, and it was after volunteering there that BAGRC’s founding organizers decided to bring a similar camp to the Bay Area.
(Above: Bay Area Girls Rock Camp's founding members - from left to right - Natalie, Melissa, Anna, Sarah and Carey)
In 2007, the Portland and Bay Area camps, along with camps from all over the world, formed the Girls Rock Camp Alliance, an international coalition of like-minded organizations with a common mission of empowering girls through music. Now going into its 6th year, the GRCA has a growing membership of 30+ camps, with representation in cities all over the US, Canada, Europe and South America.
In the next few years we aim to move into a permanent space to host our year-round programs, as well as lessons, workshops, performances, recording sessions and more. Our plans also include affordable practice spaces for bands and an all-ages venue. If you have a space to donate, or ideas, information, etc, please contact carey[at]bayareagirlsrockcamp[dot]org.
Bay Area Girls Rock Camp is a nonprofit dedicated to empowering girls through music, promoting an environment that fosters self-confidence, creativity and collaboration.