#WWV19 was a success! During October 14-18, YWCA-MC participated in the Week Without Violence, an annual campaign organized by YWCA USA. Along with YWCA local associations across the county, we engaged the community through a variety of different activities designed to raise awareness and advocate for the end of all forms of gender-based violence. Our regional approach took the form of social media campaigns, community engagement, policy advocacy, and a donation drive. One of the highlights of our week that made #WWV19 a success was raising awareness among college and high school students across the county. We had the opportunity to share information about the cycles of power and abuse, gender-based violence, and our agency’s services with students at Monterey Peninsula College, CSU Monterey Bay, the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, and Hartnell College. We also engaged youth at in our YEA programs at Alisal High and Soledad High. These students took the Week Without Violence pledge to demonstrate their commitment to ending gender-based violence in the community, which culminated in a symbolic handprint collage.
Another highlight from the week came during our Capitol Hill Call-In, where staff, interns, and community partners came together to advocate for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. VAWA provides critical funding to several of our programs and to YWCAs across the country. By coming together for this action, we were able to share our collective support for VAWA with the offices of California state senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris.
Although #WWV19 has come to an end, we will certainly continue our advocacy efforts throughout the rest of the year. You can learn more about our organization’s work to end cycles of abuse by watching this recording of the Week Without Violence congressional briefing, led by YWCA leaders from associations across the county. We also encourage you to listen to the WWV episodes of “Organize Your Butterflies,” YWCA USA’s regular podcast.
Thank you again to everyone who helped make #WWV19 a success!