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Washington Area Women’s Foundation Announces New Young Women’s Advisory Council Cohort
Twenty-five fellows selected for 2019 – 2020 Cohort
Washington, D.C. (January 24, 2020) – Washington Area Women’s Foundation, the only donor-supported, public foundation dedicated to building economic security for women and girls in the Washington region, announces its newest cohort of 25 YWAC Fellows through the Young Women’s Initiative (YWI).
YWI is a District-wide effort launched in 2017 to amplify the voices and center the experiences of young women and gender expansive youth of color in decision-making processes.
As part of the initiative, The Women’s Foundation offers a paid fellowship in partnership with the YWCA National Capital Area, for young women and gender expansive youth of color to advocate for gender and racial equity, engage in participatory grantmaking, and to learn about local policy, organizing, and advocacy.
“Centering the voices of young women and gender expansive youth of color is critical to our mission and the work that we do to ensure gender and racial equity in the region,” says Jennifer Lockwood-Shabat, President and CEO of Washington Area Women’s Foundation. “We’re eager to start the year with 25 new young leaders, who will undoubtedly use their powerful voices, passion and expertise to break down barriers to a brighter future for today’s generation and beyond.”
YWAC Fellows ensure the work of the YWI stays grounded in the lived experiences and needs of young women of color residing in DC and serves as a leadership development program. The YWAC fellowship gives young women of color opportunities to expand their professional networks and broaden their skill-sets. It provides them with a solid knowledge base to have discussions with policymakers about issues that impact them, and to engage in conversations with community members.
“At YWCA National Capital Area, we believe in the collective power of girls and youth to change the world. We are excited to partner with The Women’s Foundation to amplify the voices of young women of color in the District of Columbia and educate a new cohort of young leaders as advocates for gender and racial equity,” said Monica Gray, CEO of YWCA National Capital Area. “As we enter 2020, the work to ensure equity, particular for young women and gender non-conforming youth of the color, should be top priority for all of our communities. We are excited to support The Women’s Foundation’s efforts to ensure that all youth are heard, valued and supported in their work towards justice.”
The 2019-2020 YWAC Cohort are:
- Ezinne Anyanwu
- Alicia Butler
- Charnay Casson
- Chioma Chukwurah
- Deranique Graydon
- Re’Shae Green
- Na’Asia Hawkins
- Angelica Hernandez-Vasquez
- Gianna Judkins
- Amira Kamara
- Juana (Juanita) Mata
- Rontisha Minor
- Ayana Mitchell
- Jenny Paniagua Salomon
- Anna Parra Jordan
- Carla Portillo
- Katya Medrano Quintanilla
- Stephanie M. Rodriguez Santa
- Soliyana Seyoum
- Crystal Smith
- Tiana Spencer
- Ijeoma Uka
- Asreeta Ushasri
- Kiran Waqar
This is the third year The Women’s Foundation has offered the YWAC fellowship. YWAC Fellows, from the first and second cohort, collaborated with The Women’s Foundation to outline a Blueprint for Action including policy recommendations by young women and gender non-conforming youth of color to shift local policies and practices in the District of Columbia in support of their ability to thrive, and to award microgrants through the Rock Star Fund.
For more information about Washington Area Women’s Foundation or to donate, visit www.thewomensfoundation.org.
About Washington Area Women’s Foundation
Washington Area Women’s Foundation is a DC-based public foundation dedicated to mobilizing our community to ensure that economically vulnerable women and girls in the Washington region have the resources they need to thrive. Learn more about The Women’s Foundation’s mission to transform the lives of women and girls, the Washington region, and the world by visiting us online, on Facebook or on Twitter.