(NASHVILLE, Tenn. – April 9, 2021) – YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee recently wrapped up its annual 21 Day Racial Equity and Social Justice Challenge. More than 3,100 individuals from Nashville and around the region participated. The Challenge is a part of YWCA’s mission to eliminate racism and empower women and featured daily emails and action steps for individuals to take that will broaden their understanding of systemic racism and gender inequity in our nation and in our own community.
“There is a thirst for more knowledge and understanding around the issues of systemic racism and social injustice,” said YWCA President & CEO Sharon K. Roberson. “We are proud to be able to reach and teach so many in our community and beyond who are ready to examine our troubled history and work towards a brighter, more inclusive future where racism, sexism, and discrimination are diminished.”
The themes in the 21 Day Challenge focused on gender-based violence, environmental racism, sports, and racial healing/reparation. YWCA hosted an impactful webinar on racism and sexism in sports in the final week of the challenge, featuring Vanderbilt University Vice Chancellor and Athletic Director Candice Storey Lee, best-selling author Andrew Maraniss, and YWCA’s Exec. Director of AMEND Together and VP of External Affairs, Shan Foster. Click here to view.
We asked our Challenge participants to share some of their reaction to the initiative.
I have had to enroll in a lot of programs recently about race, equity and social justice which I greatly appreciate. However, none of the programs have opened my mind more than your program.
Taking action around environmental racism feels more accessible, and it feels easier to make the argument to others (not yet on board) that action is needed. It’s a newer conversation around how communities of color are impacted disproportionately that relies on data.
Racial bias has been going on for so many years, and now is a time for healing for all people.
YWCA is grateful to Jackson National Life Insurance Company for signing on as Peace Sponsor for the initiative for the second year in a row.
“We were honored to support the 21-Day Challenge again this year to encourage dialogue that will promote empathy and create a more just and inclusive society for all members of our community,” said Niya Moon, Corporate Philanthropy Manager at Jackson.
Last summer, YWCA launched the first 21 Day Challenge, and more than 2,500 individuals took part. The original challenge was inspired by Food Solutions New England. The nonprofit adapted an exercise from Dr. Eddie Moore, Jr. and Debby Irving’s book into the interactive 21-Day Racial Equity Challenge. The challenge is designed to create dedicated time and space to build more effective social justice habits and bring awareness to issues of race, power, privilege, and leadership. We are grateful to YWCA Greater Cleveland for curating and sharing their content with us as we adapted the Challenge for our community’s needs. Lean more by visiting on our website.
About YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee
For 123 years, YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee has helped women, girls and families in Nashville and Middle Tennessee build safer, more self-sufficient lives. YWCA is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. Programs include Domestic Violence Services, Girls Inc., AMEND Together, Social Justice & Advocacy, Dress for Success and the Family Learning Center. For more information, visit https://ywcanashville.com, follow us on twitter @YWCANashville, Instagram @YWCANashvile and find us on Facebook at facebook.com/YWCANashville.
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