Annual Gems Conference in Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. --  A Grand Rapids-based Christian ministry will be bringing women together for three days of encouragement and insight related to girls. GEMS Girls` Clubs, a global ministry with 680 active clubs in the United States provides encouragement and fellowship opportunities to girls ages 8-15 through a club-style mentorship program.

The GEMS Conference will be held July 26-28 and will feature several top Christian authors and speakers including best-selling author and founder of the Speak Up Conference, Carol Kent; former executive director of Proverbs 31 Ministries, Renee Swope; current Proverbs 31 Ministries author, Arlene Pellicane, and GEMS executive director, Cindy Bultema, among several others. The entire conference roster includes over 50 presenters.

Cindy Bultema has served as the executive director of GEMS for two years and has witnessed the growth of the conference`s speaking line up and attendance. 'While the conference provides encouragement to those already participating in GEMS, 'explains Cindy, 'it is also open to the public. Anyone who is raising, or mentoring girls can benefit from the wisdom shared by these amazing women.'

Bultema is also a well-known author and speaker who has been featured through Proverbs 31 Ministries and Speak Up. Bultema joined GEMS in 2017 and has redeveloped many of the ministry`s programs and approaches in recent years. 'Our hope is to make GEMS relevant to girls. We want to address the issues that girls are facing today unabashedly and offer them hope and the resilience that comes with realizing Christ`s love,' describes Bultema.

The ministry has highlighted the research from Dove`s recent study 'The Real Truth About Beauty: Revisited' which demonstrates the self-esteem and identity crises that many girls are facing. Statistics from the Dove report include that only 11% of girls globally are comfortable describing themselves as `beautiful` and 72% of girls feel tremendous pressure to be beautiful.

'The GEMS curriculum, products, and this year`s conference will have a theme of `LOVED.' We want to equip parents, mentors, teacher, everyone to help girls know they are loved and accepted as they are,' explains Bultema.

Many sponsors will be featured at the event including Samaritan`s Purse Operation Christmas Child, Thomas Nelson, Protect Young Eyes, Dream Vacations, Faithgirlz, ViBella Jewelry, The Cocoa Company, Baker Book House, Moody Publishers, The Esther School, and many more.

Tickets for the conference are available through the GEMS website at http://www.gemsgc.org/conference.

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