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Who we are:

sisterxsister is a volunteer program for young girls interested in media. it is for girls, lead by girls. the goal of our monthly networking group is to connect, empower, educate and encourage hundreds girls across the united states who CREATE

our team is a small trio based in new york city!

build and bloom founder Jessica Whitaker is a seattle native who uses her online platform to teach photography and business skills to new photographers globally. Jessica is passionate about giving young photographers the ability to change their legacy through photography as a business

sisterxsister director Kara McCurdy is a couple’s photographer who is as passionate about storytelling as she is passionate about the promotion of women in the workplace, in the media industry, and in the world!

sisterxsister program manager Laura Ulrich is a photographer with a management and human resources background specializing in healthy program culture, promoting diversity and teamwork, and small business growth!


After finding SXS i realized how important SXS is is because I don’t think there is a lot of representation with women, [they’re] under-represented everywhere, so to be surrounded by a bunch of women who are doing [sisterxsister] is really uplifting and a great example for other young women to let them know that they can make a carrier out of what they love. [such as] photography, where we are told all the time that it’s not something realistic to make money from. It’s really important for young girls to know that they CAN.
— Cyan, 17 years old


My favorite thing I have learned is learning how to network myself. going into photography I didn’t have anyone teaching me how to do it, I was just by myself, so when I came to SXS that had photographers of all different levels of experience. Some had been doing it for longer than me who can teach me tips and tricks of how to get into the industry and network myself as a photographer. It was very beneficial to me because i had these women to look up to, work with, make friends with and ask questions to help me.

I’ve hung out with SXS friends outside of the meetings, we’ve made photoshoots together, youtube videos, go get brunch. its great to make new friends, I don’t even want to go into photography as a career. Having it as a hobby with sister has made it so much more enjoyable because I not only have people to talk to about photography but I also have genuine friends outside of the group.”
— Sophie, 18 years old
EDEN, 25

EDEN, 25

CYAN, 17

CYAN, 17

“I’m 17 years old, and I live in Brooklyn. I’m a photographer and an actress, and I love doing creative things in general! I found sisterxsister through build and bloom. Seeing this existed, especially for young women, I was like “oh hell yeah!” I think what sets sisterxsister apart is that it is so positive and so casual. I never feel like anyone is sizing me up. A lot of the time, I’m the youngest person in the room, and it’s good to feel respected. Everyone shows compassion for each other and celebrates each other’s successes. Initially, photography was a hobby; I’m starting to take it more seriously. I have a community where I can reach out, collaborate, and that roots for each other. It’s very rare!”
— Chloe, 17 years old


I quit my 9-5 as a food scientist and i do freelance food science and now photography. I attended the first meeting in March 2018 and have been coming ever since. I love seeing the same faces I have met since the first week and also meeting new people. It is so nice to meet people in your industry that share the same ideas, or different ideas, and you can learn based off of each other. I find that if you’re just meeting online it becomes very shallow because you’re only seeing the face value of what they’re portraying online. If you’re meeting in person it is so invaluable. SXS is a very uplifting and supportive community, we never shoot down ideas and we are always there to support. There is always someone there to give you advice. I have grown by new ideas from girls on how to run a business, how to be a business woman. Business is not always the strong suit of an artist, they don’t always go hand and hand, to learn something more practical on how to lift yourself up in a professional setting is really important. I have learned more biz tactics and it has helped me a lot.
— Eden, 25 years old

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each meeting should leave the girls feeling encouraged, educated, and empowered with practical tools, open discussion, and resources to carry into the upcoming weeks.

during the april 2018 networking meeting, we discussed 'HOW TO PROTECT YOUR BEST YES: WHERE TO DONATE YOUR TIME + TALENT’ this lesson taught girls how to set boundaries while still having a heart of generosity.


sisterxsister is home to 1050+ girls who are registered attendees

of those women, 300+ girls attend on a regular monthly basis

our most engaged cities are Houston, Dallas, New York, Atlanta and Chicago

each of our eight cities has two co-leaders

across the country, we have six Regional Ambassadors leading sisterxsister on a volunteer basis

90% of the girls who attend are either students or work another job and are beginning to pursue their creative interests

80% of the girls that attend have never before been offered a free, in-person, educational arts community or the necessary resources to grow their creative interest into a busines

60% of the girls who attend have never before been a part of an all-women organization or women-centric safe space

for an average meeting, 60% of girls are returning attendees and 40% are typically new friendly faces! We have a strong retention rate, but we love when our girls invite and bring along new friends, too!

Our age range for attendees usually lies between 17 - 25 year old women



Provide us with necessary financial resources:



Financial, the most important for us to continue the program:

Mailchimp Subscription - $200 monthly

Trademark Fees - $1000

Registration Fees - $500

P.O. Box - $200 annually

Gmail Business Account - $20 monthly

Nonprofit Insurance - $1000 annually*

*at this time, we do not have insurance; however, for the meetings and workshops that we host this is a priority!

Because we believe in this cause, Jessica has paid for these costs out-of-pocket in order to cater to the needs of our Build and Bloom community! Any assistance covering these costs would be greatly appreciated!

Our branding, advertizing, and production value has never come first for Build and Bloom because of our emphasis on community and inclusivity, foremost. Although, in order to expand and reach more young adults in the future, we would love to invest in graphics, web design, and overall constent branding to attract more visual artists and creatives to our community and workshops!


Have another amazing resource? Talk to us!

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