The Just, Girl Project is a campaign to empower young women through the power of music.I had the pleasure of interviewing Ilana Harkavy, the founder of the project, to share with you her goals and message for the campaign.
1. What is your story? Tell us about yourself.
My name is Ilana Harkavy. I’m an LA-based singer-songwriter and I also am the founder and CEO of a branding company called nailed it media! I have been singing and songwriting for my entire life! I had an exciting career in electronic dance music and was able to collaborate and tour with some amazing artists worldwide. I also worked on music that was featured on TV and in films. I had a blast! I feel so grateful for those opportunities! But to be honest, I never felt truly satisfied. I decided I wanted to get back to my first love, my roots—Pop music. So, I created my very first solo project, Just, Girl.
2. Why did you create the Just, Girl project?
A couple of years ago I stumbled upon a startling subculture: social media accounts devoted to the promotion of anorexia, bulimia, and self-harm. It broke my heart because, not only did I feel saddened by these negative messages, but I also related to them.
This body of work sheds light on the struggles I’ve faced as a young woman and the mottos I’ve adopted to overcome them.
The person I am today is still very much a work in progress. I struggle daily to accept what I see in the mirror, but I want nothing more than to love myself. I knew that I wanted to make music that was raw & honest, and that could impact my audience in a meaningful way. My little sister Shula has always stressed to me the importance of being a positive role model. Since I’ve always been passionate about girl culture and mentorship, I felt it would be a great idea to create an album devoted to the thing I love most in this world—being a big sister. I want to impact these girls and let them know that its OK to be OK and you don’t have to attack yourself everyday. You can in fact love yourself if you believe it enough.
3. What is the overall goal of the project?
The Just, Girl. Project is a fiery musical movement that empowers girls to embrace their passions, be blatantly honest, and to take ownership of their individual struggles. Through the power of music, this project relates to and empowers girls to be the utmost honest version of themselves, take responsibility for who they are, and go after what they are most passionate about.
I believe that this project has the ability to revolutionize music and girl culture, as having music that ‘gets you’ is so important. My new EP, Just, Girl. will be the first release from The Just, Girl. Project.
4. How does the project directly help girls?
This project is about being raw, honest, up front, and self-aware. I created functional music. Music is a emotional and connective. It allows for people to become inspired and uplifted. It has the power to change lives. I experienced first hand growing up and I see it in the way a lot of Pop artists are utilizing it now to make a statement.
I want to create an Etsy store. My team and I will handcraft personalized items such as mirrors, bracelets, journals, and dream boards that include lyrics and positive affirmations that girls and guys alike can use to inspire and coach them through every day. I want everything to be functional for them.
But more importantly, I want to continue growing the movement online. I’ll continue to write in my blog and create social campaigns devoted to positive and honest messages for young women.
5. How does music help spread your message?
Music is an amazing and accessible way to connect with people. It is not threatening and it enters the mind in a subliminal way. I think its one of the most powerful tools!
Just, Girl. is a five track EP (half an album) — These songs address ongoing struggles I’ve faced ranging from body image to social acceptance and the mottos I’ve adopted to overcome them.
Here are the songs:
“My Body” – Your Body Image and Self Worth
– Look within yourself and take ownership of how you feel, even if it’s ugly.
– Love your body, and if you don’t, tell yourself you want to so you’ll believe.
“Lipstick Liars” – Your Reputation
– Own who you are and the choices you make.
– Avoid lying. Try your best to live life honestly and not throw others under the bus.
“Just, No.” – Your Voice
– Hold true to what you believe in and what you want.
– Speak up for yourself and be assertive.
“Neon Fire” – Your Passions
– Never give up on your dreams. Let them drive you.
– Let your frustrations fuel and motivate you.
“We Are Famous” – Your Motto
– Give yourself a positive mental pep talk everyday.
– Convey confidence: Fake it ’til you make it darling.
This is my pep talk to the future vibrant, bold, and beautiful women of the world.
6. How can we help you with the Just, Girl Project?
At the moment we are in the crowdfunding phase of the project, raising money so we can fully execute our project. We would greatly appreciate any donations people can give and/or if they can share the campaign with their friends to spread the awareness!
If you would like to donate then visit the Indiegogo campaign
Want to learn more? Visit the Just, Girl Tumblr