Let our mission be yours
YWCA is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women,
and promoting peace justice, freedom, and dignity for all.
Diversity is differences in racial and ethnic, socioeconomic, geographic, and academic/professional backgrounds. People with different opinions, backgrounds (degrees and social experience), religious beliefs, political beliefs, sexual orientations, heritage, and life experience
The YWCA supports policies that contribute to the elimination of racism. This includes but is not limited to policies that eliminate racial profiling, increase immigrant rights, retain and strengthen affirmative action, reduce hate crimes and result in increased education on racism and its elimination. The YWCA knows tin order to have a voice in the work against racism, we must also set the example within our own organization.
Statement from YWCA Board of Directors following the death of George Floyd:
June 8, 2020
To Our Supporters and Our Communities,
In 2009, the YWCA USA General Assembly adopted the following mission statement:
YWCA is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women, and promoting peace justice, freedom, and dignity for all.
This is who we are. Our YWCA is an organization where differences of all kinds – race, ethnicity, and beliefs – are respected, valued, and protected. Our YWCA is where hatred, bigotry, and intolerance are inappropriate and rejected. Our YWCA also recognizes that it is not enough to have a diverse and inclusive Board and Staff. We are compelled to acknowledge, to listen, and to act.
Recent events have caused us to be even more intentional in our Board conversations and vigilant in upholding our YWCA mission in North Central Indiana. The violent and tragic deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and too many others have evoked sadness, frustration, anger, and disappointment. As an organization and as a community, we cannot afford to ignore the serious study of present-day racism and injustice and their connections to centuries-old systems borne of fear, prejudice, distrust, and hatred.
The leadership of this YWCA unites with the voices across our country crying out for justice. We cannot be silent. We must stand against bigotry, inequality, and injustice whenever and wherever we see it.
The YWCA follows our mission and serves communities in Elkhart and St Joseph Counties by providing shelter and safety for distraught women and their young children; by offering educational and job training programming, and by collaborating with others. We are also committed to broader and deeper efforts to eliminate racism, including frank and honest discussions about implicit bias, institutional inequities, and racial injustice.
In these challenging times, we will be introspective, account for our assets and deficiencies, and renew our pledge to the YWCA mission of eliminating racism and empowering women.
Let our mission be yours.
Jeanine Gozdecki, Board Chair, and Susan Tybon, President & CEO
Board of Directors 2021-22
Chair, Debbie Smogor, Members: Karen Barnett, Kirstin Baum, Gerald Best, Hayley Boling, Janet Joan Evelyn, Renée Fleming, Dominick Fultz, Gracie Gallagher, Kreg Gruber, Mike Joines, Holly Kelly, Nancy King, Amy Shah, Ron Teachman, Jeanne Yoder.
Our Board encourages you to let our mission be your mission!
In 1946, the YWCA began working for integration throughout the entire national organization, adopting an “interracial charter” that established that “wherever there is injustice on the basis of race, whether in the community, the nation, or the world, our protest must be clear and our labor for its removal vigorous and steady.”
That work culminated in the addition of the “elimination of racism” to our mission statement in 1970. It is our goal to foster opportunities to engage in open dialogue about race and racism, increase awareness, build coalitions, and transform inequities.
We call on all to pledge to be part of the solution to racial inequities in our country and to join the YWCA in advocating for peace and justice for all.