Who We Are

Our mission: to improve the lives of young women affected by breast cancer.

Here for the Girls, Inc. (H4TG) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit improving the lives of young women affected by breast cancer (diagnosed under age 51). We offer social-emotional support through services that provide personal connections and a shared experience among our members. Our research-based support model focuses on the overall well-being of our members and delivers our services through a non-clinical, peer-based approach. The result is an inclusive community based on equity and cultural humility that cultivates a sense of belonging from diagnosis, through treatment, and beyond.

What We Do

Our members receive support through a variety of programs and services that encourage emotional healing including annual weekend retreats, an annual calendar that includes a breast health guide, educational sessions with partnering physicians, program activities and communications, along with in-person and virtual support. All these offerings are available at no cost to young women with breast cancer.

Our History

The Here for the Girls story dates back to 2006, when Mary Beth Gibson and René Bowditch met at a retreat for breast cancer survivors. Facing this disease as young women opened their eyes to the gap in services to address their unique challenges and the limited resources for finding peers who “got it”– who understood the concerns, needs, and fears they faced because of their age. Together, Mary Beth and René developed a shared passion to provide support to young women like them.

They began by inviting young women with breast cancer to René’s home in Virginia to share encouragement and information. These monthly meetings blossomed in 2007 into a nonprofit they named “Beyond Boobs!” It was during those first meetings that these two developed their model of providing intimate, peer-led support in a comfortable environment. As the organization evolved, Mary Beth and René helped grow new support systems around Virginia and beyond and added program services.

Today, what started as a small monthly support group is a thriving nonprofit that serves women diagnosed with breast cancer in their 20s, 30s, and 40s. In 2015, after adopting another breast cancer nonprofit, Pink-Link, services expanded to include virtual support. That’s when the organization changed its name to Here for the Girls (H4TG for short). 

H4TG offers in-person and virtual support through a variety of programs and helps hundreds of young women each year. The vision these co-founders launched is reaching more young women every day with the positivity, compassion, and love they instilled in it from the start because Here for the Girls is built on this foundation of love and shared passion.

Co-Founders

Our Team

Board of Directors

MARY BETH GIBSON (LEFT) & RENE BOWDITCH (RIGHT)

"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: "What! You too? I thought I was the only one!""

~ C.S. Lewis

Chris Schwab

Executive Director

It is the gentleness and strength of our women, the tenacity and passion of our team, and the love and support from my family that inspire me to be Here for the Girls!

Victoria Riley

Director, Program + Operations

Life goal: persistency fueled by passion!

“Sometimes you need to step outside, get some fresh air and remind yourself of who you are and who you want to be.”

Celia Styer

Operations Manager

“Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass… but about learning how to dance in the rain.”

Vicki Vawter

Program + Community Outreach Manager

“I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in being strong, I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and I believe in miracles” And that’s why I am here for the girls…

Desiree Parker

Communications Manager

I want survivors to feel like they have all the tools and support they need to face this new chapter in their lives.

Amanda Capozzi

Events + Development Manager

Lisa Marshall

Community Outreach Associate

“It’s funny how, in this journey of life, even though we may begin at different times and places, our paths cross with others so that we may share our love, compassion, observations, and hope.”

Karen Wilson

Fundraising and Marketing Manager

Amber Quillin

Office Coordinator

“Be a rainbow in somebody’s else’s cloud”

– Maya Angelou

Robin Wyatt – President

General Services Officer – Colonial Behavioral Health
Williamsburg, VA

Rene Bowditch – Secretary

Co-Founder – Here for the Girls, Inc.
Williamsburg, VA

Thomas A. Smith, Jr., CPA – Treasurer

General Services Officer – Colonial Behavioral Health
Williamsburg, VA

Mary Beth Gibson

Co-Founder – Here for the Girls, Inc.
Williamsburg, VA

Michael A. Franks

Vice President, Commercial Loan Officer – TowneBank
Williamsburg, VA

Kandace McGuire, MD

Chief of Breast Surgery – VCU/Massey Cancer Center
Richmond, VA

Linda McKee, MBA

Service Line Administrator for Oncology  – Riverside Health System
Newport News, VA

Ashley Smith

News Anchor/Reporter  – Channel 13 News Now
Virginia Beach , VA

Don Styer

Director Business Analytics – Whitney, Bradley & Brown (WBB)
Virginia Beach , VA

Dennis Szurkus Jr., MD, MBA

Chief Medical Officer – Henrico Doctors’ Hospital
Williamsburg, VA

Teresa Simms

H4TG Member Representative
Williamsburg , VA

Joyce Ortiz

H4TG Member Representative
Williamsburg , VA

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© 2020 Here for the Girls, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) public charity
EIN 26060190
1309 Jamestown Rd. Suite 204
Williamsburg, VA 23185
Contact us at info@hereforthegirls.org
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