Starting a Women’s Empowerment Group

5/26/16 UPDATE: 

We changed our name to Gal’s Guide to the Galaxy and are certified non profit business in Indiana. We’re expanding to loads more events and help. Check out the website as we have a mailing list and a way for you to start your own chapter. 

WEB logo

After a lot of thinking and emails, private conversations and a general push…I’m starting a casual women’s group.

The purpose of these meetings would be to gather women together to have a safe place to talk about the every day issues that we struggle and strive at. It would be a meeting of the minds on what it means to be a woman and how to inspire the best in all of us.

The group itself will not have a specific religious underpinning, it’s open and inclusion to all faiths. I’m not planning on writing a book or make a documentary. All conversations would be confidential and held in the highest regard of privacy.

Children will be welcome. I have a 10 year old and a 5 year who has volunteered to play with any of the children who attend.

The group will be called WEB – Women Empowering Balance. Each of us interconnecting to form something bigger than ourselves. We do have a twitter @webswomen to follow as well as a private facebook page.

In the future I hope that this group does go public and we organize ways to help women’s causes and foundations  gather our resources for a greater change in the life of girls and women around the world but first, let’s work on ourselves. Empower ourselves before empowering others.

Meetings would be once a month in a private home near Indianapolis, IN. The group will be invitation only (limited space).

The meetings to be the last Wednesday evening of each month.


Meetings have been awesome! We have a wonderful diverse group of women who are welcoming, encouraging and insightful. We have a great mix of women from ages 20-60, parents & non parents, single ladies to poly, corporate sector to homemakers. Everyone adds value. We got really lucky.

Our topics so far have been:

  • What does society expect of us?
  • Women in Movies with a focus on the Bechdel Test
  • What Does Advertising Tell Women?
  • Conventions: Slut Shaming in Geek Culture
  • Homemaker Vs. Employeed

Start Your Own Chapter

I’ve had many wonderful emails, facebook messages and comments below of amazing women wanted to start their own women’s group. I applaud you ladies. Here are some tips.

* Create a private facebook group (or you can join ours Facebook me to join the Indianapolis one). This allows all members to post articles, memes and general advice seeking posts to a group of ladies they trust without the backlash. The FB page has been a great communication tool to keep a conversation going after a meeting, prep information before a meeting or create a poll to decide the next topic of the meeting. Invite women from your friends list and encourage other women to invite their friends and your group will grow.

*If you are not a fan of Facebook use emails. Create a list of emails to send invites to your meetings. See who is interested and see what day of the week will work.  Our meetings are the last Wednesday of the month but you can work out any day.  If you are going to send out articles try not to send emails to your group more than once a week as people’s email boxes get full and they will start to think the group is spamming.

*The key to this is to start with women you know. Those women will tell others and your group will grow. Don’t worry about advertising publicly at first.

*Find a private location to meet. Women are most likely to talk if they are not in a crowded restaurant or quiet library. A group leader’s home is best.

*For the meeting itself we have handout. This includes our get to know you questions (we only do this is there are new members in attendance) then we get into our topic. Sometimes there is an information spill and sometimes we go straight into questions and debate. Here is an example of our July meeting 2013 topic: What Ads Tell Women. Your group leader will want to have information and questions prepared ahead of time to keep the conversation going.

*The group leader needs to set a tone that everyone’s voice matters and that you’re all in this together. We can all learn from one another.

*At our meetings we’ve started with consciences awareness of issues facing women. We’ve aired our own struggles. After 6 months we are now talking about activism and volunteering. See where your group is at. Don’t push to activism if they are not ready or informed on a topic.

*As always, let me know if you need any help or advice.



55 thoughts on “Starting a Women’s Empowerment Group

  1. says:

    Hello Kate 🙂
    I am planning on starting a Women’s Empowerment group in my town also. My only issue is that I’m not exactly sure how to start it, and what I should focus on. I’d love to speak to you more about it so we can encourage each other. I think its great what you’re doing.

      1. Carol Bennett says:

        Hi Kate..I want to star a womens group.I already have the name and a few interested women. I didn’t know if I needed to register with Chamber Of Commerce or someone to make it official..Please give me your thoughts. Thanks

      2. Kate Chaplin says:

        If you are starting a meeting group and no money is exchanging hands you shouldn’t need to register with the CoC. However if you want to be able to accept donations and give to other women’s organizations a non profit files might be worth it. Think of it as starting a Meetup, there is no official things that need to happen to get a group of women together.

    1. Shemeka Dawson says:

      Hello I really need your help I’m trying to start a group for my community but need some advice can you help

  2. Haley says:

    Hi Kate
    Thank you for your innitiative. I too want to start a women empowering group and struggle to start. Please help?

      1. Marcia Elizabeth says:

        I am thinking of starting a woman’s group… share ideas, support, and to learn what it really is that we can do for each other as women. I love most of what I’ve read about your methodology, and emotional focus, and the ideas of inclusion and support. Have a question though.

        Why do you have a cut off at 60? Do we stop being women when we are “OLD”……or are we a separate and unwanted opinion? Turning 69 this year in July, and realizing every day, with every contact I have with women…. women of any age…. that all our opinions, creativity, wisdoms, strength and weaknesses work so much better with the support of other minds, other travelers on this path of mother/sister/daughter/ friend

        We never stop growing, and often in these later years, our tasks have diminished sufficiently enough that we are able to see some of the whys, hows and wherefores of what worked and what didn’t in our long lives. Our issues are all related…….every woman knows other women of every age….has, or had, a mother, grandmother, friend etc. ….and to be able to share each other’s perspectives, and growth is a warm and loving path to more knowledge, understanding and support for each other. Looking back from this OLDER age, allows we seniors to see the commonality in all of us, and often, it is with more patience and ability of time for giving, and seeing through the fog of those extra busy lives we lead.

        I’d love to know what you think on that subject. I am in Massachusetts, and it is often a hectic pace keeping up with today’s tech-assisted and device-challenged world. I know I would look so forward to, above all, the hearing of other’s experience, and the sharing of
        the uncertainties, fears, and knowledge we all share.

        You are the first web page that came up for me in my search for “How to start a Women’s Group”, and I am grateful already, for all your work in this direction, and your generosity and sharing of information gleaned from the actuality of having done just that.

        Thank You,
        Marcia Elizabeth

      2. Kate Chaplin says:

        I understand the misunderstanding, we don’t have a cut off age at all. We just happen to have members in that age range at the time of that posting. Every woman, from every age has value. We can all learn from each other no matter the age, race, experiences etc.

  3. linea says:


    i want to start a women empowerment group, where i encourage women who lost hope in life and academically, i wnt to assit them to gain confidence and to return to school as well as to assit them to look for jobs, how do i start such group

  4. Katie Philips says:

    Hi I live in the middle of England, Great Britain. Having been largely housebound for 15 years through my entire 30’s and early 40’s, I now am much better though still struggle and have very limited energy for activities or outings, and I rarely meet people or make women friends and old friendships have disintegrated. I love the support and humour I find with other women and have been wondering for a while how to make new friends in a supportive group situation, I googled “how to start a womens group” today and found your inspiring story of starting your womens empowerment group. Thank you, I now realise i can simply begin, without worrying that its not a book group or an art group. I realise also that its ok to start small. I have a neighbour id like to get to know and a woman from my slimming group so i will ask them first and see how it goes. I will keep you posted, i don’t use facebook but do use twitter, maybe i will start a separate twitter feed. Thank you again.

  5. Monique gGloster says:

    Hey, Kate. Thanks for your dialogue. As I’m looking to build a group some of these points will be useful. I held a meeting if nine women this past weekend and it was very interesting. Going slow, and working on our name for now. I’ve requested you on FB. THANKS

  6. Jennifer Johnson says:

    Kate! I love the info on your blog! My friend and I have an internet radio show and have been toying with the idea of creating a women’s empowerment group here in Birmingham, AL. Of course we didn’t know where to start and the insight you have is great! I’d love to pick your brain on some things to see if our little ideas could really make an impact here in the Magic City!

  7. Carolyn McCorkle says:

    I am thinking of starting a group in Sandpoint IDaho-with a vision of women who are single, mom and professional that will geer towards an atmosphere of positive energy, love of life and ability to interchange ideas with out blame and or shame. It is hard in this small town to bring women together because of the seasons, but more so the economically down turn. A lot of people are on low income housing and income. I am some what a lose to the initital start and I want to bring speakers in to also assist- any ways of how to start this could be greatly appreicated

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      That is great! I say go for it! Gear towards the positive but allow women to be able to vent and work out problem sometimes releasing the pressure valve is so needed and wonderful. If you are worried about the season perhaps doing on online meeting is an option. Google Hangouts and Skype are wonderful for this. It’s not expensive at all to have an in person meeting, I tend to cook for the meetings but a pot luck works so well! The best way to start is to talk to you like minded friends and see if they like the idea and what day of the week they are the least busy. We tend to do Wednesday as “WEB Wednesday” is easy to remember. Start the group small, you’ll be shocked to see how fast it grows when you encourage each person to invite a friend. Don’t worry about speakers right away just talk. Come up with a general topic and have a free flow of conversation. Go for it the rewards far outreach any risks.

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      Check out the section in the above post with the headline “Start Your Own Chapter of WEB” it doesn’t even have to be a sister group of ours it can be your own group and and use the ideas listed in the post.

      Honestly the best way to get started is to decide on a location and invite ladies to come.

  8. Elisabeth Bass says:

    Hello Kate!

    I want to start a WEB group for refugee women in my community. I am interning at a refugee agency this year and I think a group like this would be wonderful. I was wondering if you had any tips for a women s group working directly with refugees??

  9. shunda says:

    For the last year and a half, I have been wanting to start a women’s empowerment group. I have been putting it behind, due to, how to get started. I want this group to be successful and grow. what are some steps that I can take in having a successful group….

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      Start with people you know. Set a tone that everyone’s voice matters and the more diverse voices you have in your group the more a chance to really learn something new. Have the people you invite, invite others. You’ll determine your level of success. With a group like this success isn’t necessary mean that are hundreds of women in attendance. Start small and try to help as many people as you can as a group.

  10. Janice sistrunk says:

    Hi, my name is, Janice Sistrunk
    In Need of Heip with Writing, ” A Women Empowerment Program” Also Open to Suggestion, This will be my First Meeting, But most Differently, Not the Last,

    In Need Of Your Help, Thanks You!
    Sincerely: J.SISTRUNK

  11. Janice sistrunk says:

    I need of, Help with Writing
    A Women’s Empowerment Program,
    This is my first,
    Most Definitely not my Last… Thank You
    Sincerely: J. Sistrunk

  12. Daphanie Larkin says:

    Hi, I am in Houston, Texas, and I am interested In starting a women empowerment group as well. I am inspired by your post, and would like to move forward on getting started. I just would like to know if you have any words or advice for getting it all together? Thanks in advance…

  13. annette says:

    Hi I started a women’s online Facebook group. I have a small group of 7 ladies. We just share ideas Daily. I assigned topics to each of the ladies weekly we than share what we find do on the topic and give our personal input based on experiences, & thoughts. So far it’s been good but I am running out of topics to assign. Any suggestions?

  14. carolyne Ntshole says:

    Wow Ms Chaplin you a God sent i am on the process of starting two separate support groups one is more like WEB,the other is a empowering women to start ther own business or grow if they are already on Business by bringing in local successful business owners. After reading about WEB i had a lot to put on paper.Please accept me on Facebook group of mentor and kindly add me on Facebook i can use a mentor like you. Thank you

  15. Gwendolyn says:

    I want to start a group for women who have been broken, hurt or disappointed by life’s challenges. It is my desire to move them from pain to purpose by transforming them into leaders, business owners. and entrepreneurs through coaching.

  16. Carol Britt says:

    Hi Kate. I am starting a young ladies Support group here in Spartanburg, SC. I am 48, however I feel I should start with the younger women. I have a few dedicated women, but I would love to have at least 7 core women. I am a firm believer that before we can help others, we need to work on ourselves. Since I am 48 and don’t have many friends in their twenties, what’s the best way to get a few more ladies involved?

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      Awesome! Don’t worry about the ages or the number of women who attend, it’s about the quality of conversation and the help that is given. Start with the women you know, the more they love the meetings the more they will invite women of all ages to attend. Word of mouth is the strongest way to get people to try a meeting. We even had “bring a best friend” night.

  17. Domonique Corsey says:

    I’m a very very interested in starting a women’s group here in Waco, Tx. The group will probably do more branching out but I am going to step right in.
    Is there anything I should know?

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      Go for it! Each group is different. What works for mine is we meet in at my house, so we can be as loud as we want and stay as late as we want. We have a topic for the night but it’s totally okay for us to get off topic. Create a safe environment where everyone feels listened to.

  18. Kate Chaplin says:

    I apologize for the lack of comment approvals. I have approved them all. There are 8 new comments on this post. Many of them are asking about more info about starting a women’s group. I’m in progress with a packet for starting a chapter all you need to get started and connect to the many wonderful women in your area.

  19. Simone Wilson says:

    Hi Good morning I want to start a women empowerment group in my country would it be OK to use the name WEB ? And not be a sister group.

  20. Angelisa says:

    Hello Kate,

    Once you have completed your info packet for beginning a Women’s Group, please let me know how I may get a copy. I have just started on in the MD/DC/VA area, and don’t want to have to reinvent the wheel if I don’t have to. LOL!

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      Very cool! We have our chapter handbook. We changed our name to Gal’s Guide to the Galaxy. Email us and we’ll get you a PDF. galsguidetothegalaxy (at)

  21. Yvonne Schutt says:


    I along with seven other women started a group for mother’s of adult children with disabilities. The idea is support for the mom’s but also to discuss and get information regarding our adult children with disabilities. We have thus far had four meetings, very unstructured and are not sure how to organize and structure this group. Any ideas or information you might lend would be appreciated. We don’t have a designated leader of the group, however because I organized the beginnings of this group I guess I am the unofficial group leader, but the group really belongs to all eight of us. We meet at my home which seems to be very comfortable for everyone. Any suggestions or ideas would be appreciated. Thanks

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      Wonderful! Some groups need structure and some don’t. If you’re getting attendance and the people who are coming are diggin’ the vibe, don’t change it. If you feel like it need structure. Have opened ended questions that you ask each meeting like: “Since the last meeting what success did you have that you wanted to share?” And the reverse “Since the last meeting what obstacles did you face that you want to share?” That can start the conversation and let it roll.

  22. DEEPIKA says:

    Equity of men and women is very important in villages people think that the men are more capable than women but this thinking is not right.

  23. lol says:

    hello katie my name is lola from nigeria, i want to start a womens support group in my country and also to be in the whole of africa bur i dont know how to go about it, i would love to have your mail so i can discuss about it extensively with you.

  24. Ti says:

    I’ve started a women’s group in my city and so far so good but there’s one thing. I have two women who send subliminal messages to each other and one can stand to be around the other. Can you give me some advice on how I can address the issue without hurting anyone’s feelings or making it obvious on who I’m speaking about?
    Thank you kindly

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      Awesome on starting a women’s group! We’ve had the same issue as well and yes, it’s usually starts subtle but it does send ripples in the group. When a moment went to far we learned what our group was all about – helping build women up and not tear them down. We now use that for managing moments. Opinions and values are personal and all valid but they can be expressed in a way that doesn’t tear another member down. As a leader I urge that if you can’t find a way to build up other women in the group instead of tearing them down (even if it’s in your own mind) perhaps this isn’t the group for you.

  25. terrineka griffin says:

    hello I am also having thoughts about starting a women’s empowerment group in my small town. I would like to communicate with you more on getting it started and the actual group focus. I am only 23 so im a bit concerned about being taken seriously by the older members. I believe I have what it takes uplift others and be a helping hand .. please write back .

    Terrineka G.

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      That’s great! Gal’s Guide has chapter programs available and offers a network of support and a foundation of what has been working for the last 3 years. Whether it’s under the G3 system or independently, don’t worry about age being a factor, if you create a space that is diverse, inclusive, helpful and empowering it’s becomes about the group dynamic and not the age of the leader. As a leader what matters is follow through, communication and keeping any and all promises to the group; age isn’t a factor in that.

  26. Robin Taylor says:

    Hi Kate! I started a women’s group in my community just last week, prior to finding your website or any other information on doing this. I simply posted a paragraph with details of the type group that I wanted to start on an existing town Facebook page. I asked that interested send me a text by Messenger. My groups purpose is primarily to make good friends (within a certain age range), because it’s difficult to meet other women for friendship in my town. I figured that I can’t be the only one with this problem! My question is, although making good friends is the purpose of this group, can we add another purpose as we go along? I don’t want the group to grow into a large group. This week we will have 9 women attending our meeting. A few of the women don’t work outside the home, a few of us are job searching, one has gone back to school fulltime, and a few are retired. None of us knew each other before our first meeting. I feel like I’m “winging” this. Can you offer me any suggestions? Thank you so much!

    1. Kate Chaplin says:

      You can totally add a purpose beyond making good friends. That might be what brings them together but organically it might turn into something more, and even if it doesn’t that’s fine too. Everyone needs friends.

      We all feel like we’re “winging it” when trying something new. Just stay open to your attendees. Ask if they would like the group to be about something more. Brainstorm ideas with them, you never know. Keep at it!

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