A New Year
A letter from Executive Director Kristin Griffith:
I continue to be amazed by the sheer passion and commitment our community has for the girls and young women of the YWRC. Our clients never fail to move and humble me with their desire to succeed and ability to thrive in situations where many of us would falter. As I reflect on 2016, I am both thankful for the progress we gained and motivated to work even harder.
Thanks to supporters like you and the work of dedicated Board members, staff and volunteers, we were able to launch new initiatives to assist girls and young women. I am pleased to share a few of these below:
- Through partnership with the Des Moines Public Schools, the YWRC began a pilot project allowing young moms to complete course work in our computer lab necessary to make up high school class credits. Our latest high school graduation statistics show our teen moms had an 82% graduation rate, compared to the national average of 38%.
- In collaboration with the Crime Victim Division of the Iowa Department of Justice, we began the Lotus program – which provides individual and group creative therapies to girls and young women who have survived abuse or assault.
- YWRC is paving the way to track gains in resiliency of the girls and young women we serve. Through research and consultation with other organizations across the country, we have created new tools to better understand the effect of childhood trauma and measure the positive impact programming can have on mental and physical health over time.
Moving into 2017, we recognize there are many challenges ahead. It is clear girls and women will continue to be subjected to sexism. It will be up to all of us to continue the fight for progress and equality so the next generation can have the bright future #everygirldeserves. Nearing our 40th anniversary, our vision for the future is inspired by looking back to our beginning with Louise Rosenfield Noun and other strong-minded women.
We exist because of you. My sincere thanks for all you do to support the Young Women’s Resource Center.
On behalf of the girls and young women we serve, the Board of Directors and our staff, I wish you a healthy and happy 2017!