? This post is sponsored by YWCA Columbus. But rest assured, all thoughts and opinions contained within are genuine and our own. ??
On Wednesday, October 14th, YWCA Columbus will be hosting a one-of-a-kind virtual event.
The Activists and Agitators event is an annual fundraiser for the organization. With a pandemic raging, the organizers knew that this year’s event would have to be held virtually. But they also knew that they had something very important to discuss.
The YWCA has long advocating for social justice, but they’re delving even deeper this year, bringing a virtual racial equity training and a profoundly realistic conversation with author Austin Channing Brown.
The event is more of a workshop. The goal is to empower audiences with a foundational understanding of how racism is pervasive throughout our systems and codified throughout history, and how we can focus on equity and justice moving forward.
“This year’s event really is for the community and by the community,” said Jillian Olinger, Chief Mission Officer at YWCA Columbus. “I would encourage everyone who’s able to join us because we will be providing racial and social equity training.”
The training will be an ongoing program through the YWCA starting in early 2021. It will provide continued development of racial literacy in Columbus, increasing accessibility and inclusion to racial equity training.
“Our goal with this work is really to expand the racial literacy of our community,” said Ollinger. “We’ve got a lot of important conversations ahead of us with policing and reform, but if we don’t have a clear understanding of how these are structural issues and the history, then the solutions we devise at best will only be partially effective.”
During the virtual event, best-selling author Austin Channing Brown will discuss her incredible book, I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness. If you’d like to read her book before the event, and you should because it’s engaging and remarkable, you can order it from one of these black-owned book shops.
In a way, the virtual setting of Activists and Agitators makes it a more accessible event. Not only can those near and far attend, but the price point also makes it easier. Tickets for the event are $20 and there are scholarships available if that’s still not in your budget.
The training will be a mix of pre-recorded and live streams, and much of the programming will be available after the event, just in case you’re busy on October 14 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. This event is for those who’ve been out there doing the work for a while, and for those of us who are just realizing how important anti-racism is.
“No matter where you are on your journey, there are points of entry. This year has had a lot of trauma for those who have been doing the work for years,” said Ollinger. “For people who are just starting out, the event will be a place to take those first steps.”
To learn more about attending this year’s Activists and Agitators event, you can visit their website here.