Authored by Laurel Ramey, Foundation and Event Director, Langley Federal Credit Union.
My first time visiting the YWCA South Hampton Roads was to tour their new emergency shelter in November 2019 while it was undergoing significant renovations. I was then invited for a virtual tour of the completed facility in April 2020. During that time, I learned about their mission to eliminate racism and empower women, and how their programs provide important services to victims of violence.
When COVID-19 hit Virginia in March, Langley knew it was a time to expand our charitable giving. Our community non-profits, who often operate on very small budget to maximize resources for their clients, needed us more than ever. Langley and our employees stepped up to the plate – supporting organizations like the YWCA who were providing essential services to those impacted by COVID-19.
I knew that the YWCA provided critical shelter and food to families in crisis, but I soon learned how social distancing often isolated victims with their abusers and how the economic strain of COVID-19 caused some relationships to become physically violent. The YW’s dedication to clients and the community shined brightly as they quickly adapted to meet social distancing requirements, while still providing these much-needed services.
In May, we experienced a flashpoint with the death of George Floyd – highlighting systemic injustices across our nation. This tragedy, and many others, required our attention AND action. Again, the YWCA South Hampton Roads quickly took action with their 21 Day Racial Equity and Social Justice Challenge. Through informative articles, videos and podcasts, they showed participants how they could become actively anti-racist. I personally experienced multiple points of enlightenment, and I highly recommend the challenge to everyone!
At Langley Federal Credit Union, we stand with the YWCA South Hampton Roads in their fight to eliminate racism. We will continue to support their vital emergency shelter for families fleeing violence, and we are proud to stand beside them as they lead the charge for work that must be done in our communities.