A Page Right Out of Our Own History
As Black History Month comes to a close, I wanted to share a little about the YWCA’s role in working toward eliminating racism across the USA and right here in Boise. Our organization was at the forefront of this work in the early 1970s resulting in significant program changes.
The only three-generation group of YWCA members in 1968 included Miss Cherie Buckner-Webb, an active Y-Teen; her grandmother, Mrs. Claude Buckner, member of the Board and the World Fellowship and the Interracial Committees; and Cherie’s mother, Mrs. A.E. Buckner, active in the Public Affairs Committee and the Interracial Friendship Club. (Photo courtesy of Cherie Buckner-Webb and the Idaho Statesman) Photo caption from WCA’s History Book, published in 2010 in celebration of the organization’s 100th Anniversary (page 84).
Programs designed to eliminate racism became part of the YWCA’s offerings, along with other very popular classes like physical fitness, smoking cessation, weight loss, and one of the first licensed daycares in Boise available to community members on a drop-in-basis for free. While programs offered by the WCA have changed in the ensuing 50 years, we know that our outreach to underserved populations is just as important as ever.These remarkable Black women engaged with the work of the YWCA during the 1970s and the youngest one—Cherie Buckner-Webb—is still involved, following in her mom’s and grandmother’s footsteps. (By the way, our History Book is for sale and includes a lot of great photos as well as documenting the first 100 years of the YWCA, now WCA)
Thank you for your ongoing support of our vision of a community where individuals thrive in safe, healthy relationships. Through the years, we have helped many individuals, in many capacities… but there is still much work to be done.
I am grateful for each and every one of you being committed to our mission of safety, healing, and freedom from domestic abuse and sexual assault. Home is not safe for all—but it should be.