April was a busy month with our various Stand Against Racism community events and the national YWCA Until Justice Just Is campaign. Learn how we engaged our community in our anti-racism work!

YWCA is on a mission to eliminate racism and empower women. Because we want to create a world where everyone has the opportunity to thrive, part of our work includes raising awareness about the impacts of institutional and structural racism, and building a community among those who believe in racial justice.

Stand Against Racism (Until Justice Just Is) is an annual YWCA event that reinforces our commitment to combating racism and a reminder of the work that still needs to be done. Stand Against Racism events are hosted by YWCAs across the country, and we want to highlight moments from Seattle | King | Snohomish’s 2024 educational and community-building racial justice events.

Town Hall Seattle

At Town Hall Seattle, our discussion was led by our keynote speaker Elmer Dixon (Activist and Co-Founder of the Seattle Chapter of the Black Panther Party). This year, our conversation was inspired by the theme Sankofa: Looking to Our Past as We Build Our Future, and we discussed the past, present, and future of social justice activism on a local, national, and international scale. With moderator DonYeta Villavaso-Madden and a panel of community leaders that included Thy Nguyễn, LueRachelle Brim-Atkins, Dr. Benjamin Danielson, Hyeeun Park (박혜은), and Guadalupe Mabry, we discussed the Black Panthers’ work at the height of the Civil Rights Movement, the ongoing anti-genocide pro-ceasefire protests led by college students across the country in support of Palestine, a comparison between social justice movements in the past vs. today, and more.

Three photos of our 2024 Stand Against Racism Town Hall speakers

Our panelists reflected our theme, representing a wide range of generations and social justice experience, and they all offered their own unique perspective and commentary. “My generation was supposed to solve the racial issues, and here I am all these years later still trying to help fix it,” commented LueRachelle Brim-Atkins with a tired laugh, one echoed by many of the other older members on our panel.

A recording of the event is available to watch on our YouTube page.

Snohomish County

Our Snohomish County Stand Against Racism event was an outdoor celebration with music, resources, and presentations made by state and county public officials. Julio Cortes, Washington State District 38 Legislator, shared his experience growing up in an immigrant family and coming to the US as a young child with his family. He talked about acceptance and equity, and the importance of honoring diversity, which fueled his desire to become a state representative for Washington.

Despite the downpour, spirits were high as we spent the day learning, sharing our experiences with one another, and growing as a community.

Our community's pledge to be the change

An outdoor event for all ages was hosted at Family Village Redmond, where residents, children, and adults were taken on a tour where they learned more about YWCA’s history. Kids had fun with bubbles and learned more about racism with the help of kid-friendly videos, and everyone enjoyed pizza, fruit, and lemonade while getting to know their YWCA community better. Residents, along with YWCA staff and community members, helped color a 3ft x 3ft art canvas, which will be hung onsite at Family Village Redmond when it’s completed.

Photo of several Denny Apartment residents watching the 2024 Stand Against Racism Town Hall stream

At Denny Apartments, our newest permanent supportive housing location, residents and staff enjoyed a BBQ while watching the Seattle Stand Against Racism Town Hall event in the building’s lobby. Residents enjoyed hearing from Elmer Dixon and our amazing panel of speakers while conversing with their peers and eating their lunch.

Our Opportunity Place residents celebrated by covering the walls and halls of the building with artwork and a message: Be the Chain for Change. Be the chain (the link) for change means coming together in unity as one (linked in) to stand firm against racism. The puzzle pieces represent putting the pieces together (leadership) so we can be united.

Photos of the decorations and art work hung around Opportunity Place

Kresha Green, our Regional Director of Housing Services, and many other amazing speakers discussed race and social justice issues in Snohomish County at Step Up, a virtual conference dedicated to education and fostering a deeper understanding about racial equity and social justice. Inspired by YWCA’s Stand Against Racism event, Step Up started over a decade ago in Snohomish County with the goal of educating people about social justice and fostering a sense of community in order to build a better, more equitable future for all. Break-out seminars discussed topics ranging from intersectionality to racial equity and beyond. 

Stay up to date with our latest advocacy work with YWCA's monthly newsletter, and register for our 2024 Inspire Luncheon to expand your understanding of racial equity and social justice.

Stand Against Racism
Ana Rodriguez-Knutsen

Ana Rodriguez-Knutsen is the Content Specialist for YWCA's Marketing & Editorial team. From fiction writing to advocacy work, Ana works with an intersectional mindset to uplift and amplify the voices of underrepresented communities.


We share the stories of our program participants, programs, and staff, as well as news about the agency and what’s happening in our King and Snohomish community.

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Thu, 05/09/2024 - 10:00