MetroFocus

“WOMEN CREATING CHANGE”

Transcript

>>> YOU KNOW, THEY SAY IF YOU
WANT SOMETHING DONE RIGHT, GET
IT DONE BY A WOMAN.
SINCE 1915, BEEN THE EMBODIMENT
WITH WOMEN SUCCESSFULLY WORKING
TO IMPROVE LIVING CONDITIONS OF
COUNTLESS NEW YORKERS.
THE 104-YEAR-OLD ORGANIZATION
WHICH HAD ELEANOR ROOSEVELT AS
ONE OF THE EARLIEST MEMBERS, NOW
HAS A NEW NAME.
WOMEN CREATING CHANGE.
DOES IT HAVE A NEW MISSION?
JOINING US TO ANSWER THAT AND
OTHER QUESTIONS, CAROL WACY AND
VICE CHAIR, DEBRA MARTIN OWENS.
WELCOME TO BOTH OF YOU.
PLEASURE TO HAVE YOU HERE.
>> THANK YOU.
>> THANK YOU FOR HAVING US BACK.
>> CAROL, LET ME START WITH YOU.
BEFORE THE NAME CHANGE AND WHAT
IT MEANS, I'M WONDERING IF YOU
COULD GIVE US A HISTORY OF THE
VENERABLE ORGANIZATION THAT YOU
NOW HEAD.
WHY DID IT COME TO BE IN 1915
AND WHAT ARE SOME OF THE THINGS
YOU'VE DONE OVER THE DECADES TO
HELP THE LIVING CONDITIONS OF
NEW YORKERS?
>> THANKS, RAF.
AS YOU SAID, THE ORGANIZATION
HAS BEEN AROUND SINCE 1915 AND
OVER THAT TIME, IF YOU GO BACK
TO THE EARLY DAYS OF THE
ORGANIZATION.
THINK ABOUT WOMEN AND WHERE THEY
STOOD IN SOCIETY IN 1915, THEY
DIDN'T HAVE MUCH POWER, THEY
DIDN'T HAVE THE RIGHT TO VOTE.
THEY DIDN'T HAVE MUCH.
IT WAS REALLY A GROUP OF WOMEN
WHO CAME TOGETHER TO SAY, HEY,
THIS IS A DIFFERENT TIME AND WE
HAVE ACCESS TO.
SO THE ORGANIZATION WAS FOUNDED
EARLY ON TO FIGHT FOR THINGS
LIKE THE RIGHT TO VOTE AND WCC
WAS INCREDIBLY INVOLVED IN THAT.
OVER TIME, THEY FORMED THE FIRST
BIRTHING CENTER, REALLY
IMPORTANT, GIVING MATERNAL CARE
FOR WOMEN, WHICH IS, CONTINUES
TO BE AN IMPORTANT ISSUE FOR
WOMEN.
WORKED ON HOMELESSNESS ISSUES
FOR WOMEN.
WORKED ON HIV/AIDS EDUCATION IN
SCHOOL AND BROADER ISSUES LIKE
THAT.
OVER THE YEARS, WORKED ON REALLY
IMPORTANT ISSUES THAT WOULD
IMPACT THE LIVES OF NEW YORKERS.
SO BIG ISSUES AND TRYING TO HAVE
BIG IMPACTS IN THE CITY.
MAJOR POLICY ISSUES THAT THEY
WORKED ON AND OVER THE YEARS,
HAVE HAD A LOT OF IMPACT.
>> SO DEBRA, WHY THE NAME
CHANGE?
YOU'VE BEEN SO SUCCESSFUL FOR
104 YEARS.
WHY CHANGE ANYTHING?
>> THE CITY CLUB AT THE TIME AND
VOTE THE, SORT OF THE INFLUENCES
OF THE DAY.
MOST OF THE ORGANIZATIONS AT
THAT TIME WERE CLUB
ORGANIZATIONS.
THEY WERE FOR WOMEN WHO WERE
WELL CONNECTED TO THEIR HUSBANDS
AND HAD GREAT RELATIONSHIPS.
IN 2019, WOMEN ARE ON THEIR OWN
NOW AND SO WOMEN CREATING CHANGE
IS MORE INCLUSIVE AND ALLOWS FOR
WOMEN OF ALL SPECTRUMS TO BE
INVOLVED IN THE ORGANIZATION.
>> THAT WAS ALWAYS THE CASE BUT
NOW YOU'RE MAKING IT CLEAR.
>> WE'RE MAKING IT VERY CLEAR TO
SAY, WE'RE BEING INCLUSIVE.
>> SO IT REFLECTS THE DIFFERENT
DEMOGRAPHICS OF THE CITY.
DOES IT MEAN A CHANGE IN
MISSION?
>> I THINK, YOU KNOW, IT'S STILL
THE SAME MISSION IN THAT WE'RE
PUTTING WOMEN IN THE FOREFRONT
BUT I THINK TO SAY IT'S WOMEN
CREATING CHANGE AS OPPOSED TO
THE CLUB, I THINK THAT'S LETTING
EVERYONE KNOW YOU DON'T HAVE TO
HAVE A PARTICULAR BACKGROUND.
IT'S IMPORTANT TO SAY ALL THE
CITY CAN BE INVOLVED IN THIS
ORGANIZATION.
>> SO CAROL, AS YOUR
ORGANIZATION HAS PUT IT, WOMEN
ARE UNIQUELY POSITIONED TO BE
LEADERS IN THEIR HOMES,
NEIGHBORHOODS AND COMMUNITIES
BUT OFTEN FACE BARRIERS.
WHAT ARE THE CHIEF BARRIERS
WOMEN FACE TODAY?
>> IF YOU LOOK ACROSS NEW YORK
CITY, YOU KNOW, THERE'S A LOT OF
DIFFERENT TYPES OF WOMEN.
THERE'S WOMEN OF ALL DIFFERENT
BACKGROUNDS.
THERE'S IMMIGRANT WOMEN,
DOCUMENTED AND NOT DOCUMENTED,
HEAD OF HOUSEHOLDS, SINGLE MOMS,
WOMEN HAVE A LOT ON THEIR PLATE.
THEY'RE WORKING JOBS.
WE KNOW NEW YORK IS CHALLENGING
TO EVERYONE.
IT'S EXPENSIVE TO LIVE HERE.
IT CAN BE A REAL CHALLENGE TO
HAVE A GOOD JOB AND EARN A GOOD
LIVING AND RAISE YOUR FAMILY AND
GET THEM A GOOD EDUCATION.
ALL OF THESE THINGS ARE
CHALLENGING, GENERALLY, FOR
EVERYBODY.
BUT THEN WHEN YOU LOOK AT OUR
UNDERSERVED POPULATION, THOSE
WHO ARE EARNING LESS, THOSE WHO
LIVE IN POVERTY.
WE'RE REALLY LOOKING TO MAKE
SURE THOSE WOMEN HAVE A VOICE
AND THAT THERE ARE CLEAR
OPPORTUNITIES TO GET THEM
INVOLVED LOCALLY IN THEIR
COMMUNITIES TO MAKE THEIR LIVES
BETTER AND ULTIMATELY, THE CITY
BETTER.
>> DO YOU HAVE SOME CONCRETE
AGENDA ITEMS THAT YOU HAVE
DECIDED TO TACKLE?
>> WHEN I CAME ON THE BOARD, WE
HAD SORT OF LOTS OF DIFFERENT
AREAS AND HERE WE'RE REALLY
FOCUSING ON UNDERREPRESENTED
WOMEN.
SO WE REALLY WANT TO EMPOWER THE
WOMEN TO EMPOWER THEMSELVES AND
LAID OUT A WONDERFUL PLATFORM
SHE CAN TALK ABOUT REGARDING OUR
CIVIC MATTERS PROGRAM.
>> YEAH.
>> TALK A LITTLE ABOUT THAT.
>> GREAT, SO WE LAID OUT THIS
AGENDA CALLED CIVIC MATTERS.
THINK ABOUT MATTERS AS BOTH A
KNOWN AS A VERB.
VERY ACTION ORIENTED BUT CIVICS
DO MATTER.
AND WE WANT EVERYONE TO BE A
PART OF THAT.
SO WE LAID OUT A THREE YEAR
STRATEGY.
IT'S GOING TO FOCUS ON GETTING
PEOPLE WHERE THEY ARE AND WE
HAVE THIS ONLINE RESOURCE PEOPLE
CAN GO TO ANYTIME, ANYWHERE.
WE'LL BE CURATING CONTENT FROM
ACROSS THE CITY ABOUT CIVIC
ENGAGEMENT THAT DIRECTLY AFFECTS
WOMEN AND THEN WE'RE GOING TO
GIVE THEM REAL TOOLS AND
RESOURCES TO BE ABLE TO TAKE
ACTION ON THAT.
SO INFORMATION, FOR INSTANCE, IF
SOMEBODY WANTS TO VOLUNTEER IN
THEIR COMMUNITY, THERE'S A GREAT
ORGANIZATION CALLED NEW YORK
CARES.
THEY CURATE A LOT OF RESOURCES
AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR PEOPLE TO
GET ENGAGED.
IF YOU WANT TO LEARN MORE
VOTING, THERE'S SOMETHING CALLED
WHO'S ON THE BALLOT UP AT
COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY.
IT WAS PRODUCED UP THERE.
WE'RE GOING TO TAKE ALL KINDS OF
RESOURCES.
HOW TO VOTE, HOW TO GET
INVOLVED, PARTICIPATORY
BUDGETING AND GIVE TOOLS AND
RESOURCES AND HOPEFULLY EDUCATE
THEM A LITTLE BIT ALONG THE WAY
AS TO WHY IT MATTERS AND THEN
GOING OUT INTO COMMUNITIES ALL
ACROSS THE CITY, ALL FIVE
BOROUGHS, DOING ISSUES ON
WORKSHOPS THAT MATTER TO THEM.
THEY'LL TELL US WHAT MATTERS AND
DEVELOP THE WORKSHOP BASED ON
THAT AND GIVE THEM TOOLS AND
EDUCATION AND REAL ACTION SO
THEY CAN COME OUT AND DO THINGS
THAT MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
THE THIRD PIECE IS AROUND
FELLOWSHIP.
HOPING TO PARTNER WITH A WELL
KNOWN FELLOWSHIP ORGANIZATION.
IF SOMEBODY WANTS TO GO DEEPER,
HAVE A LONGER INVOLVEMENT OR
ENGAGEMENT AND THEN THE FINAL
PIECE OF IT IS WE'RE TALKING
WITH CUNY.
WE LOVE CUNY HERE IN NEW YORK
CITY, ACROSS ALL FIVE BURROUGHS.
CUNY SERVES EVERYBODY IN THE
CITY.
>> YOU MAKE A PUSH TO YOUNGER
WOMEN.
HOW ARE YOU DOING THAT?
>> IT'S INTERESTING YOU SAY
THAT.
SO CURRENTLY ON THE BOARD, WE
HAVE SOME AMAZING DYNAMIC WOMEN
ON THE BOARD WHO ARE REALLY
PIONEERS IN ALL KINDS OF
BACKGROUNDS FROM SOCIAL WORK TO
THOSE IN THE LEGAL PROFESSION TO
THE MEDICAL PROFESSION.
WHAT WE DON'T HAVE IN TERMS OF
DIVERSITY IS YOUNGER WOMEN ON
THE BOARD, SO I THINK FOR NOW,
THEY NEED TO ENGAGE THOSE WOMEN.
THEY ARE LEADING, OUR FUTURE
LEADERS.
I THINK IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT
THAT WE PASS THE MANTLE ON TO
THOSE WOMEN.
>> MEMBERSHIP UNDER 35 IS FREE?
>> WHICH IS GREAT, GREAT.
I SHARED IT WITH ALL THE YOUNGER
FOLKS I KNOW.
SAY YOU NEED TO JOIN AND BE
INVOLVED.
>> ALL RIGHT.
>> WE WANT EVERYBODY AT THE
TABLE.
OLDER PEOPLE, YOUNGER PEOPLE,
EVERY KIND OF BACKGROUND AND IF
PEOPLE THINK ABOUT WAYS TO GET
INVOLVED, COME TO OUR WEB SITE,
LEARN MORE ABOUT US.
WCCNY.ORG BUT WE ARE LOOKING FOR
PARTNERS.
IF THERE'S PEOPLE OUT THERE
WORKING IN THE SPACE.
WE DON'T SEE US DOING IT ALONE
BUT IN PARTNERSHIP.
IF PEOPLE INVEST THE SPACE AND
CARE ABOUT THIS AND REALLY WANT
TO HAVE IMPACT AND SEE AN
IMPACT, WE WANT TO KNOW ABOUT
YOU AND HAVE A NEWSLETTER EVERY
MONTH.
THERE'S A LOT OF DIFFERENT WAYS
TO GET INVOLVED AND WE'RE ALWAYS
OPEN TO NEW IDEAS TOO.
>> THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR TALKING
ABOUT THIS.
>> THANK YOU FOR HAVING US.


URL: https://www.thirteen.org/metrofocus/2019/05/women-creating-change/