Thank You for Standing in Solidarity with YWCA

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Thank You for Standing in Solidarity with YWCA

For over 160 years, our supporters have stood with us in solidarity as we have worked to build a world of opportunity, justice, and equity for the girls, women, and communities of color we serve. Through this solidarity, YWCA has been able to continue bringing heightened awareness to the complex issues of race, gender inequity, and privilege through advocacy, local programming, education, and training.

This year, we furthered our mission of eliminating racism by focusing our work on addressing racism as a public health crisis and harnessing the movement building from the national racial reckoning to gain allies in our work to fight for racial equity and justice.

We also took unprecedented action to empower women by elevating their voices and speaking out to defend the reproductive freedoms protected by Roe vs. Wade when we filed an amicus brief in the ongoing Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization Supreme Court case.

Throughout this year and across the country, YWCA has provided the girls, women, and communities we serve with the opportunities, resources, and support so they too can work in solidarity to create a world of equity and justice for all. Some of the most notable among these initiatives include our first Racial Justice Summit & Gala since 1970 which gave attendees across the nation the opportunity to rally for racial equity and celebrate the women who are trailblazing in this work as well as our annual Week Without Violence where YWCAs across the nation helped move the conversation on violence against women and girls Beyond Resilience: From Surviving to Thriving.

We are grateful for their efforts in helping to advance our mission of eliminating racism and empowering women while promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all. But we still need your help to ensure our communities can continue to be supported as they take action!

I invite you to stand with us as we continue to work to make our mission a reality for all people. I ask that you consider joining me by taking the following steps:

With your help and continued solidarity in 2022, we can keep doing the work to eliminate racism and empower women, until the world sees women, girls, and people of color the way we do. Equal. Powerful. Unstoppable!

With gratitude,

Elisha Rhodes
Interim CEO and COO, YWCA USA


Tis’ the Season for Holiday Giving
We’re in the season of giving. Now more than ever, people are in need as we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and new challenges as various strains emerge. YWCAs across the country continue to stand on the front lines of the pandemic by serving more than 2 million women, girls, and their families annually. Our goal is to ensure that YWCA Local Associations can continue to deliver critical assistance including safe and sterile testing sites, child care, meals for children and the elderly, housing for survivors of domestic and gender-based violence, and so much more!YWCA has continued working tirelessly across the nation despite the challenges from the ongoing pandemic, and we are doing our best to continue providing support to women and their families – but we need your support! We hope you’ll consider giving back this season and helping our communities by making a donation to YWCA USA or to a local association, or by volunteering at a YWCA local association near you.

Act Now! Stand for Reproductive Justice with YWCA

For more than fifty years, YWCA has supported the reproductive freedom of all people to make fundamental decisions about whether and when to have children. Right now, the state of Mississippi is working diligently to overturn Roe v. Wade and with it, the reproductive freedom of every person in this country. If successful, this generation would be the nation’s first in almost 50 years to come of age without the constitutional right to abortion care.

On December 1, YWCA USA joined the Center for Reproductive Rights and the National Abortion Access Coalition at the Abortion is Essential Rally in front of the Supreme Court to take a stand for reproductive justice in response to the ongoing Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case. This rally was a continuation of our advocacy efforts which started earlier this fall when YWCA USA, Girls Inc., Supermajority Education Fund, and United States of Women signed onto an amicus brief in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization to stand up for young women and women of color, advocate for abortion rights, and ensure the experiences and voices of our communities are heard by the Supreme Court. Read the full amicus brief.

You can join us in this historic push for women’s equality and reproductive justice by:

  • Tagging @YWCAUSA in your posts on defending abortion, empowering women, and eliminating racism in our health care system and using hashtags such as #ReproductiveJustice, #DefendAbortion, and #MyBodyMyChoice to show your support and unify our collective voice!
  • Adding your voice to YWCA USA’s call for action, by urging your Member of Congress to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act which protects the right to access abortion services.

During this fight to protect abortion rights, we need allies like you to speak out. Join us!


From Reckoning to Resolution with La La Anthony!


New Episode: From Reckoning to Resolution with La La Anthony!

Last Thursday, YWCA USA presented our last episode of From Reckoning to Resolution for the year!

Our host, YWCA USA interim CEO and COO Elisha Rhodes, was joined by actress, producer, entrepreneur, and New York Times best selling author La La Anthony to discuss her work, breaking barriers in her own health journey, and how women of color can prioritize their own mental health and wellness today.

If you missed this unique and powerful event, you can watch the latest episode here.


YWCA USA + HUED, Inc. Held successful “Breaking the Barriers” Summit

YWCA USA, in collaboration with HUED, Inc., held a virtual summit, titled Breaking the Barriers, to discuss the most significant issues impacting the health and well-being of women of color and ways to address these issues through policy at the local, state, and federal levels.

From December 9-10, attendees were able to hear from thought leaders and policy experts and had the opportunity to work together to help craft potential policy solutions to healthcare issues such as maternal health inequities, climate justice, reproductive justice, and childcare.

During the summit, we heard moving and insightful conversations between experts and thought leaders such as Congresswoman Lauren Underwood, Kate Audette, Lisa C. Richardson, Surili Sutaria Patel, Osub Ahmed, Dr. Regina Davis Moss, and so many more powerful women.

We are grateful to all those who joined the movement as we continue to break the barriers and conspire to address these issues head on. Learn more about what HUED, Inc. is doing to decrease disparities and improve health outcomes for Black, Latinx, and Indigenous patients by visiting their website.



Uplifting Women of Color Entrepreneurs at YW WE360° Pitch Competitions

While women have experienced many victories in the quest for economic empowerment, many women entrepreneurs – and particularly women of color – lack the resources necessary to maintain financial security. This year, and for the first time ever, the YWCA Women’s Empowerment 360° (YW WE360°) program hosted not one, but three pitch competitions to allow women of color entrepreneurs from across the YWCA network a chance to compete for funding to support their growing businesses.

Thanks to the generous support of our sponsors, The Coca-Cola Foundation and P&G, we were able to give away over $90,000 in funding to 16 women entrepreneurs! We extend our congratulations to all the entrepreneurs on this critical next step in their businesses and careers!

These competitions are made possible by the YW WE360° program – a national empowerment and economic advancement program centering women of color – which has supported over 25 YWCAs and their entrepreneurial women for over 2 years!

Check out this blog to learn about the November and December pitch competitions, our finalists, prize awards, and the YW WE360° program.

YWCA USA and Stillman College Open the First YWCA on an HBCU Campus


YWCA USA and Stillman College Open the First YWCA on an HBCU Campus

In November, YWCA USA announced a groundbreaking partnership with the storied Alabama HBCU, Stillman College, that will bring to life the first YWCA housed on an Historically Black College and University (HBCU) campus. The multiuse facility will provide critically needed childcare, health and wellness, recreation, and other programs and services to students, staff, and historically excluded communities in and around Tuscaloosa’s West End.

YWCA has a deeply entrenched history of providing resources that enable excluded and marginalized communities to thrive and has been at the forefront of identifying and implementing solutions to offset the devastating impacts of COVID-19 exacerbated by generations of historic inequities. Similarly, HBCUs have long stood as drivers of equity, engines for economic opportunity, and catalysts for the communities in which they operate.

This partnership will help deepen the capacity for both organizations to have a lasting, generational impact in Tuscaloosa and every community touched by a Stillman College graduate. Read more about this historic partnership here.

YWCA Spotlight: YWCA Billings

In November, we observed Native American Heritage Month to uplift the voices and history of indigenous peoples in this country. During this time, it is important to not only celebrate the cultures, histories, and contributions of indigenous people but also to educate on the challenges they have faced historically.

This is why we are proud to spotlight YWCA Billings and their work with local Crow and Northern Cheyenne Reservations in Montana, which are at the epicenter of the country’s epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. In 2014, YWCA Billings implemented services in Big Horn County to directly support Native American survivors whose cases fell outside the jurisdiction of the FBI or those who had nowhere to turn for help. Now, their Big Horn County facility is close to the reservation and staffed by a Rural Services Coordinator and Advocate who are both part of the Native American community. To learn more about what they are doing to support local Native American communities, check out this blog.

YWCAs across the nation will continue providing services, uplifting voices, and supporting Native American communities who have been historically left out of the social infrastructure that should provide for all. Learn more about a YWCA near you today.

New on the YWCA Blog

Have you checked out the YWCA Blog? Our blog features stories, tips, and other information designed to inspire and empower girls, women, and people of color on a variety of topics from civic engagement to women’s equity in the workplace and everything in between.

Read more about our work in our latest blog posts.

Upcoming Events and Important Dates

  • January: National Slavery and Human Trafficking Awareness Month
  • January 17:  Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • December 20: International Human Solidarity Day
  • December 24: Christmas Eve
  • December 25: Christmas Day
  • December 26 – January 1: Kwanzaa
  • January: National Slavery and Human Trafficking Awareness Month
  • January: National Stalking Awareness Month
  • January: Poverty Awareness Month
  • January 1: New Years Day
  • January 18: National Day of Racial Healing
  • January 22: Anniversary of Roe vs. Wade

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