Saturday, June 13, 2020
How can we move toward becoming anti-racist?
People and organizations are asking, “How can we move toward becoming anti-racist?” The Equity Institute of YWCA Evanston/North Shore offers three steps:

1. Listen.
2. Learn.
3. Take action.

Listen to the voices of the people in your community or those whom you serve, the people who have been on the margins of your municipality, business, house of worship, school or community organization. Listen deeply to what they share, especially when their experiences are different from yours. Listen to the pain, disenfranchisement, and disconnection some may express, due to the racial or other discrimination or dismissal they have historically felt.  Listen without judgment, and without becoming defensive.

Learn the full history of the community you serve, so you are not repeating the same harms that have been made in the past. Learn how to use an equity lens as you set goals, make decisions, determine budgets, write work plans, etc. (If your organization doesn’t know what “using an equity lens” means, hire some experts to teach you.) Learn that, sometimes, slower is better, if it means you’re being accountable to all those who you aim to serve or represent.  Learn to say, with humility, “I was wrong” or “We were wrong”, followed by what you will do differently moving forward.

Take action to change policies and procedures that have made it more difficult for some to access services, full employment, promotion opportunities, or seats at the decision-making tables because of race.  Take action to elevate the voices and suggestions of those who have been kept on the margins in any way.  Take action to build organizations where decisions are made in transparent ways for the good of the whole, rather than for expediency or the good of the few. Take action to hold yourself and/or your organization accountable to those formerly marginalized. Take action to make adjustments when what you have done isn’t producing the necessary transformation.

The work being done by our Equity Institute encompasses the four levels of racism (individual, interpersonal, organizational and systemic/structural). We know that becoming educated about racism is important, but it is not enough. Transforming organizations and systems must be the goal; any steps taken that do not lead to that goal are missteps.

Listen. Learn. Take Action. Transform our society.

For Juneteenth
Commit to change and inspire others:
"What I'll do"
We are collecting short videos from people with answers to the question "What are you willing to do to be part of the change?" If you have ideas about how you'll listen, learn, and take action, we invite you to film a short video on your phone telling us how by midnight next Thursday, June 18th.

We'll post the video montage to social media on Friday, June 19th.
Join us for a virtual Lunch with Sherialyn Byrdsong panel discussion on Thursday, June 18
Saturday night plans? Tune in tonight to
Cov-AID to benefit YWCA's equity work
Evanston Cov-AID is a virtual concert series showcasing some of Evanston's most talented artists in efforts to raise funds for the Evanston Community Rapid Response Fund.

TONIGHT, 50% of the proceeds will benefit YWCA's equity work. Tune in and make a difference!

Evanston for Black Lives
The Evanston Township High School graduates and organizers of the Evanston for Black Lives march called on elected officials to redirect funding to better address racial inequities during Monday’s City Council Meeting.

YWCA Flying Fish alum Sinobia gave a powerful introduction:

“You asked us to share with our community what you think are the most racially systemic issues you as a City Council need to address and any suggested solutions," said Sinobia Aiden. "Knowing that this is an irresponsible ask for us to fully cover within 10 minutes, we hope to provide just a tip of the iceberg as to how Evanston is failing its black families through the frames of policing, housing, education, health, employment and community.” Read more here.
Thanks for continuing to Race Against Hate
Thanks to all Race Against Hate supporters who are participating in their own Ricky Byrdsong Memorial Race Against Hate, and becoming " Race Buddies, Heroes, and Champions" by supporting YWCA's mission to eliminate racism. Your support helps us continue crucial anti-racism programming in a year without proceeds from the Race Against Hate, our biggest annual fundraiser. We are heartened by some of the comments people have left showing their support and what the Race means to them:

"Black Lives Matter!!!"

"I'm at a loss for the continued violence against unarmed black men in this country. I`m white and I believe Black Lives Matter. The money I'm donating is the government stimulus money that I'd rather use for good especially because we can't do the Race Against Hate this year."

"In lieu of the Ricky Byrdsong Race Against Hate registration fee, I am donating to support the work of racial justice and equity." 

"Keeping fight hate!"

"Thank you for the longstanding important work that you do."

"We need this race today more than ever! Hope to see you next year!"
You can support racial equity
Your gift will help do the work of creating real and lasting change in our communities. Take action now to help disrupt and dismantle systems of inequity and injustice. Now is the time. Please give today. 
PS: COVID-19 has not gone away, and many families are still struggling. Your gift today can help survivors of domestic violence, and other vulnerable families, gain safety and economic stability.
We love our Corporate Partners!
YWCA Evanston/North Shore | Phone 847-864-8445 | |