Powerful Stories

22 Mar

Wanda Harris and Alphie Rodriguez

The recent Women’s History Month event at UNCA featuring the YWCA was both informative and inspiring. It began with Sarah Judson, UNC Asheville Associate Professor in History, who gave an overview of the history of the YWCA nationally and locally, highlighting the organization’s leadership around social justice.

Erinn Huntley and Missy Summers

Then four YWCA Directors shared information about their programs, including powerful stories of the people they serve. These four were: Missy Summers, New Choices Director; Erinn Huntley, FutureVision Director; Alphie Rodriguez, Preventive Health Director; and Wanda Harris, Child Care Director. Specifically, Missy shared the story of a woman who is getting case management from New Choices who has gone from being homeless and hopeless to making giant steps towards a place to live and a job. Erinn talked of the family atmosphere in FutureVision, and how the teens express their thankfulness for that community. Alphie spoke of a Diabetes Wellness program participant who is now able to play with her child on the floor. And Wanda talked about the Child Care Center’s diversity and childhood obesity prevention intiatives.

Group Discussion

The presentations were followed by a lively discussion with UNCA students, faculty and administration about how UNCA can support the work of the YWCA. Finally, YWCA staff were pleased to see the YWCA’s Historical panels on display in Karpen Hall, where the public is welcome to stop by and see them.

We’d like to thank the Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program, Alice Weldon, Director for sponsoring this event.

YWCA Historical Panels on Display

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