YWCA to launch the Empowering Black and Brown Women Project

Feb. 12—CHAMPAIGN — A local nonprofit is working to create a forum for women of color to discuss their experiences with racism and find healing together.

YWCA Champaign County recently announced its new Empowering Black and Brown Women Project, which is being supported by a $30,000 Healing Illinois grant, according to Executive Director Andrea Rundell.

She said that YWCA will be "gathering together some women of color who are interested in sort of having a deeper discussion about how racism affects them."

The project will be led by women of color who have experience with these kinds of trainings and workshops, Rundell said. The organization is also working with Lead for Equity on this initiative.

While the project is still in the planning stages, women who are interested in participating can call 217-344-0721.

Sessions will likely begin in May, Rundell said.

She added that while the grant funds are available through the end of June, the YWCA would like to make this an ongoing project and will need to look into other funding mechanisms in order to do so.

"What we're hoping to do is be able to make space for women of color to begin to heal, to heal together and be able to sort of plot ways forward together how to address racism," she said. "As a white person, it's my job to make sure that we can find and create these spaces, fund these spaces, and then get out of the way."