It’s hard to believe that it is already the 2nd month of the New Year. January flew by and I loved all the connections that I made attending events and networking with dedicated, socially conscious women and men. February has a lot of events offering opportunities to further connect and grow the YWTF San Antonio community but it also offers a chance to think back on the pioneers of civil rights that fought before us.
I recently learned that seven of the nine women that signed the charter that founded the NAACP were members of AAUW. That makes me feel proud and humble. Thinking about the sacrifices these women and so many others made for the advancement of not just African Americans but women of all color reminds me every day why we must fight on. Incredible advances have been made but there is still work to do and to do anything would be an honor to those brave women, giving life to their legacy.
I watched the movie “Hidden Figures”. It’s easy to sometimes shut off the emotions you feel while watching a movie once it’s over. You tell yourself it’s not real and you move on. This one, however, isn’t like that. After reading the story of how these women broke the barriers of not just gender but of race, and then went on to do things such as publish articles on intersectionality, fair pay and other issues that we all still face, shows how forward thinking and intelligent these women were. #hiddennomore
I don’t think there is anything that women can’t do when given the same starting point as men. When we don’t have to teach our daughters that strong and assertive isn’t bossy it’s successful, when we have a seat at the decision making table every time it’s sat, when we don’t have to apologize for our failures but are applauded for our ingenuity, that is when the fight will be hardest. It will be a new fight, a different fight, one to continue pushing ourselves and each other to not be complacent, to keep a watchful eye on our progress and refuse to slide, and to keep our light visible to the world. #girlpower
It will not be in our lifetime that our fight will be won but thank God I know the women who fight on anyway. Fighting for equality and progress is something that is done in our communities, in our circle of friends, places of employment and anywhere else that fuels it. YWTF San Antonio is proud to be a part of this fight working alongside several community organizations. During San Antonio’s Dream Week-one of the LARGEST in our country honoring the work and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. we participated in MOVE U’s “Bystander Training” and “Fake News” at UTSA. We attended the KeepHer: “Keep Her Dream Alive” panel discussion. Shenée was a featured speaker at GET’s Flax Studio @ Nasty Women’s Art Exhibit and recently a featured speaker at International Love Your Natural Self Day at UTSA.
We took our enthusiasm to the streets of Austin as our Executive Director Shenée participated in the Women’s March on Texas in January.
We have a seat at the table of the city wide “Can We Talk: Equal Pay” steering committee. We also participate in the St. Mary’s University Women’s History month committee. We are building a strong coalition of partners and creating a “home” for colleagues, sisters, friends and allies. We are looking onward to our March 4th Launch event. #womenshistory
By making these important connections and playing a part in the events that happen in our community YWTF San Antonio is spreading a message that WORKING TOGETHER is essential and beneficial for the betterment of our community. #workingtogether
My dream and mission… to secure equal access to education, to receive fair pay, to live in freedom from fear of violence, to achieve work life balance, to put an end to human trafficking, to create a focus on intersectionality and to promote and provide professional mentorship. WE are dedicated…WE are determined and WE are tireless. And so we march on.
Heather Pelley, Director of Membership & Engagement
YWTF #WorkingTogether in 2016 and Looking Forward – January 2017
Since our chartering in August we have made valiant stride and contributions to the San Antonio community! We’ve built a small but mighty Circle of Directors, hosted two successful events- “EduDialogue Series”, built relationships with many of San Antonio’s like-minded organizations, individuals and institutions supporting women, and worked extensively on strategy and direction going forward. We are gearing up for an exciting 2017 full of growth, deepening our connections with folks and organizations supporting women and girls in San Antonio, and increasing our membership.
We partnered with two inspiring panels of women leaders from the education and STEM spaces in San Antonio and Texas for our EduDialogue series in October and November. Each event featured speakers sharing their insights on access to education for women and girls with a local and state focus. We partnered with Girls, Inc. San Antonio who graciously hosted this series. #edudialogue
Girls, Inc. San Antonio – Back to School Boutique
We supported Girls, Inc. San Antonio’s Back to School Boutique, an event that provided pre-loved school outfits to girls in their community. The event also included inspirational presentations by women leaders from San Antonio, along with networking and mentorship opportunities for girls in the program. #girlsincsanantonio
100 Handbag Collection
In honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we collected 100 gently used handbags filled with essential personal care items to donate to a local shelter for domestic violence survivors. We received donations from women across San Antonio through partnerships with several local organizations. Including First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Antonio, Oracle Women Leaders (OWL), and the Spouses Club for Fort Sam Houston Area.
San Antonio Feminist Film Festival – The Hunting Ground
We supported the second annual San Antonio Feminist Film Festival screening of The Hunting Ground, a documentary that discusses the epidemic of sexual assault on college campuses. The Hunting Ground also chronicles survivor efforts to force universities to prosecute perpetrators under Title IX laws guaranteeing equal access to education. We served on the panel engaging in a lively discussion of how to support survivors, how to challenge systems that permit sexual assault on campuses and how to protect daughters going away to college. Title IX is a focal demand for American Association of University Women (AAUW) as well as YWTF San Antonio. #titleIX
Celebrate Women’s History Month & International Women’s Day
We are excited to announce our Official Launch which will take place on March 4th, 2017 from 3-5 PM at Aldaco’s Mexican Restaurant at The Dominion. This event will be an opportunity to CONNECT with other women in their 20’s, 30’s and 40’s celebrating Women’s History Month, LEARN more about YWTF and JOIN YWTF. SHARE the issues that women and girls face that are most important to you. We hope to see you there and encourage you to bring along friends, family and colleagues! #womenshistorymonth
Keep checking back on our website join our e-mail list, follow us on Facebook to keep up with what’s happening at YWTF San Antonio. Please feel free to contact any member of our Circle of Directors for information about joining our chapter, or with any questions.