Sister to Sister (STS) is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization which is entrusted by the community of Montclair, NJ to actively foster safe and nurturing relationships between Montclair High School girls and caring female mentors. Through these relationships, STSwill inspire Montclair’s young women with the highest ideals of character, conduct and educational achievement, that they may become productive, resourceful and empowered leaders of their communities.

Developed by Adele Clark Katz in the fall of 1998 as a program of the YWCA of N. Essex County (currently the Little Y of the YMCA on Park Street).  The program began with 5 high school girls from Montclair, Bloomfield and Bellville and 4 adult mentors.  In the Fall of 2002, STS moved permanently to Montclair High School. 

STS hosts an innovative after-school program for girls ages 10-18 in the Montclair public schools, who are mentored by caring professional women promoting positive self-esteem, social and life skills, and empowerment.  We began as a program of the Montclair-North Essex YWCA in 1998 under the direction of Adele Clark Katz, our founder and executive director. Under her leadership, STS has now served 600 girls and young women at the high school, middle school and elementary school levels.

Sister to Sister has grown over the years. At the request of the Montclair Board of Education, we included an 8th grade program in Montclair’s three middle schools in 2006. To ease the transition to middle school, we added a 5th grade program at Charles A. Bullock Elementary School in 2014. We extended our middle school program to include grades 6 and 7 in January 2015, and are expanding our 5th grade program to Hillside Elementary School in January 2017. STS high school students mentor the 5th – 8th graders, and help them transition to the next grade and/or school each academic year.  We now provide uninterrupted mentoring to girls from 5th grade through high school.

I consistently reflect upon the impact that STS has made in my life—the relationships I’ve gained, the lessons I’ve learned and how that has shaped my growth. My ability to navigate through college and my career with confidence and class is a direct result of me being part of STS. Knowing how important this group was for me and my successful and ambitious growth, I knew I had to give back by serving as a mentor.
— Ayana Stewart-Hartsfield, STS Alumna and Mentor

What We've Achieved

  • Our mentees have been recognized for their achievements by Montclair High School during award ceremonies, sports banquets, and other programs. 
  • The young women in our program consistently graduate on time and have attended some of the most reputable and prestigious collegiate institutions in the United States and have gone on to highly regarded graduate programs.