Living in a Thailand refugee camp for six years made Bopha's childhood both difficult and dangerous. Eventually settling in Lynn, MA, Bopha struggled to fit in with American culture and the values of her very traditional Cambodian parents who thought girls should stay home, do housework, and remain silent. All these challenges took a toll on Bopha who as a teenager felt overwhelmed, depressed, and even began to suffer from an eating disorder. Luckily, she found Girls Inc. and a strong support system of mentors.
At Girls Inc., Bopha found her voice and a place where she felt accepted. Her mentors listened and encouraged her to recognize her own potential. She no longer felt like an outsider. Instead, she had a sisterhood of support and women leaders who inspired her to overcome her obstacles and set goals for success.
After graduating high school, Bopha attended Lesley University in Boston. She went on to earn both an undergraduate degree and MBA from Lesley. Today, Bopha is a Branch Relationship Manager and Vice President at Enterprise Bank and on the board of directors of Girls Inc. of Lowell. She is also heavily involved in Lowell’s Cambodian community.
"The simple act of listening helped me overcome my challenges and fears. I found the courage to accept myself. With their support, I found a happiness that I didn’t know existed."
Bopha is just one of thousands of girls each year whose life is positively impacted by building trusting, mentoring relationships with Girls Inc. staff.