Looking Ahead to a Brighter 2021: A Message from President and CEO, Loria Yeadon
Last updated: January 4, 2021, at 8:50 a.m. PT
Originally published: December 23, 2020, at 12:57 p.m. PT
Dear Y Community,
With 2020 behind us, we look forward to 2021 with great expectation and hope for a healthier and more equitable future for our community. The dual pandemics of COVID-19 and systemic racism have tested us as a nation and as a community, and these challenges will continue into 2021 and beyond. But because of these challenges, we are stronger and more resilient, and more than ever, we are resolved to stand with community, to do our part to strengthen social safety networks and inspire hope and healing in all that we do.
As we embark on this new year, we remain on mission and on purpose to serve our community. We’ve set our sights on driving the systems change necessary to address multigenerational crises, eradicate inequities and biases, and build the future we want for our children while remaining focused on the current issues confronting our youth and families every day.
In 2021, we will continue to work towards audacious goals, including:
Staff, Members, Volunteers, and Participants:
Bring back the Y’s flagship, The A.K. Guy Award, to lift up solutions to the multigenerational crisis in our community affecting youth and families and to celebrate solution providers and volunteers dedicated to making a difference in our community.
Listening more intently to constituent and community groups to co-create authentic programs and services that solve priority needs for all in our community
Advancing our work towards becoming the employer of choice in our region and further optimizing employee Total Reward
Social Responsibility and Equity and Justice:
Living our equity statement every day and weaving the threads of equity and justice into everything we do and everywhere we do it
Standing up the equity and justice center of excellence and making progress each day towards becoming an anti-racist organization
Healthy Living and Social Service:
Expanding virtual platforms and, as available, in-person programs to meet the whole person health needs of our community, no matter where they are in their health journey, with a focus on communities disproportionately impacted by health disparities
Providing community connection and engagement opportunities for all to ensure equitable access to counseling and mental health services that address health at all levels and meeting the needs of young adults experiencing homelessness through extensive services and housing through the Y Social Impact Center
Youth Development, Child Care, Camp, and Hunger Initiatives:
Advancing our work to build a generation of environmental stewards and connecting all youth to the outdoors by completing the initial acquisition phase of the Mineral Lake project, our first new camp in over 100 years
Offering virtual learning and child care options that provide vital physical activity, social and emotional health, and peer-to-peer connection, opening three new early education centers to provide much-needed resources for working families, and providing food stability resources for kids and families experiencing hunger
2021 is already shaping up to be a new adventure with brand new joys and challenges. With your ongoing commitment and support, we enter 2021 encouraged and inspired to keep moving forward with great expectations of an even brighter future for all.
As you make plans for the coming year, we hope that you will commit to investing in your own growth, healing, and self-care. We need you on this collective journey, as we unite to be better together. As you prepare to usher in the new year with reflection and celebration, please continue to follow guidelines set by our governor, mask up, get a flu shot, and practice social distancing. Lives depend on it.
In 2021, we wish you and your family all the peace, prosperity, and joy your hearts can hold.
In gratitude community,
President and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Seattle