Living Our Mission
Join YWCA Northeast Kansas in our mission to break through the barriers that perpetuate racism.
YWCA Northeast Kansas is dedicated to promoting racial equity by partnering with individuals, organizations, and businesses through racial justice training, advocacy, outreach and education.
Join the Conversation
In partnership with the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library, YWCA Northeast Kansas hosts a community book club that will feature books written by Indigenous people and people of color. All are invited to participate in monthly meetings to discuss the books and relevant social issues within our community. Discussions will be guided by YWCA’s volunteer racial justice facilitators.
Stay updated about Racial Justice Book Club information, including receiving the meeting details and bi-monthly Zoom link, by signing up here.
From the author of the New York Times bestseller So You Want to Talk About Race, a subversive history of white male American identity.
What happens to a country that tells generation after generation of white men that they deserve power? What happens when success is defined by status over women and people of color, instead of by actual accomplishments?
Through the last 150 years of American history — from the post-reconstruction South and the mythic stories of cowboys in the West, to the present-day controversy over NFL protests and the backlash against the rise of women in politics — Ijeoma Oluo exposes the devastating consequences of white male supremacy on women, people of color, and white men themselves. Mediocre investigates the real costs of this phenomenon in order to imagine a new white male identity, one free from racism and sexism.
As provocative as it is essential, this book will upend everything you thought you knew about American identity and offers a bold new vision of American greatness.
2020 Book Discussions:
“White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo
“How To Be An Antiracist” by Ibram X. Kendi
“Chokehold: Policing Black Men” by Paul Butler.
“When They Call You a Terrorist: a Black Lives Matter Memoir” by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and asha bandele
“An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States” by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz
“Healing Politics” by Dr. Abdul El-Sayed
“The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness” by Michelle Alexander
“Stamped from the Beginning” by Ibram X. Kendi
“A Perilous Path: Talking Race, Inequality, and the Law” by Sherrilyn Ifill, Loretta Lynch, Bryan Stevenson, and Anthony C. Thompson
“Citizen” by Claudia Rankine
“We Were Eight Years in Power” by Ta-Nehisi Coates
As one of the oldest and largest women’s organizations across the nation, YWCA has been at forefront of the most pressing social movements in the Northeast Kansas area for more than 160 years – from voting rights to civil rights, from affordable housing to pay equity, from violence prevention to health care reform.
What sets YWCA Northeast Kansas apart from many other nonprofits is our commitment to comprehensive social services, combined with our dedication to creating a more just world through advocacy and community education.
You can learn more and follow along with actionable steps you can take to stand against racism, empower women, and advocate for the most marginalized by joining our Facebook group: YWCA Northeast Kansas Advocacy Cafecito.
YWCA Facilitators are committed to racial justice work. As an active member of the movement to promote positive race relations, facilitators carry the responsibility of promoting a safe environment for all participants to share personal experiences and opinions regarding the topics of race and racism.
Please check out our upcoming Racial Justice Facilitation Training cohort registration on our Calendar.
Time Commitment: 4 hours spread over two 2-hour sessions with a single cohort, or group of facilitators. There is a third session available to those interested in becoming active facilitators.
Group Training: It is important for community building and continuity of learning that you complete your training within a single group.
Cost: The training is FREE if you are able to commit to attending all sessions.
What will you learn?
- Chapter 1: Getting Together. In the first of the three sessions, we will focus on “getting together,” both literally and figuratively. Get to know one another as individuals and as racial justice advocates. We will also “get together” in terms of our racial justice philosophy. Learn about the philosophy and models used at YWCA Northeast Kansas to talk about racial justice and examine common missing bricks you’ll come across in your facilitation work.
- Chapter 2: Circle and Facilitation. Next, delve into the benefits and origins of circle dialogue. Learn the mechanics of the circle and using the talking piece. Get into the role of the facilitator and learn the traits that are beneficial and detrimental to facilitation.
- Chapter 3: Practice Makes Practice. None of us will ever be perfect, but with practice we get better and better each time we facilitate. This third part is devoted to practicing your new facilitation skills. You will take turns acting as a facilitator and as a participant.
This class is limited to 25 attendees.
What Is Racism, Really?
Often people think of big, obvious examples, like racial slurs, KKK or Nazis, racial hate crime or not hiring someone based on their skin color.
But thinking about what racism IS and IS NOT is much more complicated than that.
This conversation explores the four levels of racism and how they stand alone and intersect with each other. Participants will also gain knowledge of how racism plays a role in everyday interactions, decisions, policies, procedures and laws within the U.S.
Racism 101 seminars are held periodically throughout the year. Please check back on our calendar for upcoming sessions!