Celebrate Black History Month
February is Black History Month, where we acknowledge the incredible shoulders on which this entire country stands. We stand on the shoulders of our enslaved elders who lived and endured through the building of post-colonial infrastructure and capital, Jim Crow laws, and the New Jim Crow. We do more than honor the activists, scholars, and everyday human beings that stood on the line of mass movements and daily work during Black History Month. We pledge to continue to work toward liberation for all. Our work is to create open space for Black activists, artists, writers, scholars, and people fighting daily at the root of liberty to co-create a more human and beautiful world for all.
Although we celebrate Black brilliance in February, we work to support, honor, and open space every month of the year.
Centering Black History & Health
A Special Message from our President & CEO
This month, we are bringing an even greater focus on historical and ongoing health inequities and disparities that disproportionately impact Black communities. We invite community to join us in bringing to fruition Vision 2025, the Y’s bold plan for strengthening communities. We are committed to advancing equity and justice for all through Whole Person Health, applying trauma-informed approaches, and being a welcoming place of belonging where everyone can develop and thrive. Join us as we amplify Black voices and work towards a more equitable future for all.
Learning with the Y
YMCA of Greater Seattle continues our focus on supporting Black children, youth, and adults through swim equity. With the high rate of drownings over the last year, especially in the Black community, we pause to honor those who have lost their lives to drowning and focus on the importance of swim equity as we take a deeper dive into the social history of racially segregated swimming pools during the Jim Crow era that impacted several generations of Black Americans who never had any kind of access to swimming pools, geographically, economically or socially; including resources to learn how to swim.
As we move forward in our efforts to Advancing Equity and Justice for All, we recognize that dismantling the systematic racist structures in swimming won’t be easy. Still, our efforts will raise awareness of the inequity of access to swim and safety around water. This access will encourage more young people to take up swimming as a sport, gain confidence and have fun around the water, all while learning a lifesaving skill.