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Ending Racism in Chicago NOW: A Critical Race Theory Community Education Workshop

When: Wednesday February 20, 2019 6pm
Location: We Work 20 West Kinzie Chicago, IL 60610

Space is limited please register in advance!

In honor of Black History Month, we here at the Chicago Chapter of the National Organization of Women (CNOW) are actively working to take a stance on racial justice in our city. It is very important that we are able to process difficult conversations as a way to move forward towards equity. We cordially invite you to join us for our second annual racial justice education event as we continue our commitment to embrace intersectionality as it relates to activism in Chicago. This is an evening of stories, diversity education activities, and small group discussions that validate the lived experiences of those most impacted by racism in Chicago. We will be utilizing a critical race theory framework to provide practical tools to combat racism.

For Your Information (FYI): This is a trigger warning that learning about racial injustices may bring about a great deal of anxiety or anger. As participants of this workshop it is understood that we all come to the discussion at various levels as it relates to one’s participation or exposure to racial justice advocacy and educational content. Please be respectful to one another as we all have different experiences and perspectives and here at Chicago NOW our goal is to provide a “safe space” for further reflection and dialogue in a healthy manner. As a result, some of us may be experiencing discomfort and a great deal of cognitive dissonance which is a normal part of the transformational learning process. If this is the case please feel free to follow up with someone from the CNOW leadership team to debrief after your participation in the workshop.

Register Now

We look forward to the opportunity for connection and healing that we have for this New Year. In the meantime, here are couple ways you can continue to be an active participant in your personal journey to move towards racial justice.

Keep the conversation going!

Ask questions, share your story, and listen to the stories of others. While doing so be respectful of the time and experiences of people of color.

Read racial justice educational literature suggestions

The South Side: A Portrait of Chicago and American Segregation by Natalie Y. Moore; Unapologetic a Black, Queer, and Feminist Mandate for Radical Movements by Charlene A. Carruthers; Ain’t I a Woman Black Women & Feminism by Bell Hooks; Post Racial or Most Racial? Race and Politics in The Obama Era by Michael Tesler (Chicago Studies in American Politics published by the University of Chicago Press); Critical Race Theory: The Key Writings That Formed the Movement by Kimberlee Crenshaw; Who’s Afraid of Critical Race Theory by Derrick A. Bell; and/or Whiteness as Property by Cheryl L. Harris

*CNOW may be hosting a neighborhood book club in a community near you please stay tuned for more information “To Be Announced”

Determine where your local alderman stands on racial equity

Take a look at your city council member’s previous sponsorship history on key racial justice policies by utilizing the tools developed by our friends at “The Center for Racial and Gender Equity” (CRGE) in order to determine if your current alderman is eligible for re-election from a racial equity perspective. Download the Scorecard.

Support Business led by People of Color

Join us in solidarity at Chicago NOW as we celebrate African American history Month by helping to support the work of Sista Afya which is a community based social enterprise that works to support black women’s mental wellness in the Chicago area. More information about the organization can be found here: https://www.sistaafya.com/

Any questions regarding the upcoming racial justice educational event please contact: Krystle Everett at: info@chicagonow.org

Help CNOW Honor the Work of Sista Afya during Black History Month

In honor of Black History Month we at the Chicago Chapter of the National Organization of Women (CNOW) are working together to honor and support the work of Sista Afya. Sista Afya is a local community based organization that supports the mental wellness of millennial Black women in Chicago. Sista Afya has been in existence for a year and has already made a positive impact in the Chicago community through its mission to build community, share information, and connect black women to quality mental health services. Sista Afya provides mental wellness education, resource connection, community support, and mental wellness merchandise that is simple, accessible, and centers the experiences of Black women. Sista Afya works to address the service gaps that Black women in Chicago may experience within the healthcare system due to discrimination and/or lack of accessibility to quality mental health services.

Camesha Jones is the Founder of Sista Afya and is a millennial black woman who has overcame personal experiences with mental health recovery and through her lived experiences she has become a mental wellness advocate for Black women in Chicago. Jones is no stranger to working to uplift black women as she has received a Bachelors in Sociology from Spelman College a private women’s liberal arts college in Atlanta that centers the empowerment of Black Women and a graduate degree from the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration.

She has 7 years of experience serving the community in various systems that include and are not limited to: violence prevention, mental health, HIV/AIDS prevention, and program coordination of youth development programs. She’s worked and received training from organizations such as: National Council of Negro Women, Children’s Defense Fund, UCAN, Build Chicago, and Polished Pebbles Girls Mentoring Program.

To support the work of Sista Afya please donate to the online fundraiser to support the work of black women’s mental wellness

More information about the organization can be found here: https://www.sistaafya.com/

Chicago NOW President on WTTW’s Chicago Tonight

Chicago NOW President on WTTW’s Chicago Tonight

On Monday, January 28, 2019 , Chicago NOW President Paloma Delgadillo spoke on WTTW – Chicago PBS regarding the recent Gillette commercial and subsequent controversy about men’s rights and feminism. In intersectional feminism, we call on our allies to use their voices to speak to the harmful behaviors that may be exhibited in their own community. Calling on men to do better is not the same as oppression, but instead a necessary and positive action that must be taken in order to fight against misogyny.

This discussion was also a sobering reminder that sexism is still alive and well. Though it may not always be apparent, it is still obvious in the behaviors we view as normal and in society’s inability to hold men (and all people) accountable for their actions. We have made great strides in the last few decades, but we must keep pushing for what we believe in. The fight for women’s rights can be won, but only if we keep voting, speaking out, and living every day in accordance with our feminist values.

Another Successful Women Who Dared Event

Kina Collins and Kim Foxx Accept their Women Who Dared Award

Chicago NOW’s annual Women Who Dared fundraising event took place last week and was a resounding success! This year, CNOW honored Cook County States Attorney Kim Foxx and the Chairwoman for the Illinois Council on Women and Girls Kina Collins.

Kina and Kim gave inspirational addresses, and the event was an empowering display of what women can do when we come together.

A huge thank you to our sponsors:

Silver: Alma and David Delgadillo

Bronze: Joel Kowsky, Jessica Scheller, Sue Straus

To our silent auction donors: Bella Voce, Hazel, Building Blocks Toy Store, Chicago Wolves, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Court Theatre, Lookingglass Theatre Company, Lettuce Entertain You Restaurants, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, L&A Healing Studio, Women and Children First and Chicago A Cappella. Thank you so much for your generous donations!

Thank you to all that attended!

Stay tuned for information on our next events: March to the Polls on October 13th, and Hug Your Body & Embrace Your Vote on Monday Oct 29.

Meet our 2018 Woman Who Dared: Kina Collins

Kina CollinsKina Collins
Chairwoman
Illinois Council on Women and Girls

VERNITA GRAY COMMUNITY ACTIVIST AWARD

Kina Collins is a gun violence prevention and criminal justice reform advocate. She is also a native of the Austin community on Chicago’s west side. She began her activism during her time as a student of Chicago Public Schools, where she served as a Summer of Service Learning Ambassador and continued her mentoring efforts throughout her collegiate career. She attended Louisiana State University studying Sociology. During her time at LSU, Ms. Collins was inducted as a Ronald E. McNair Research scholar and a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

Ms. Collins would go on to be selected as a National Leadership Council regional organizer for gun violence prevention and criminal justice reform through Generation Progress “Fight for a Future” network, representing the state of Louisiana. As the Louisiana regional organizer, Ms. Collins was apart of the “Beyond the Gun” campaign, where she helped launch two national campaigns around the 2016 Presidential election.

Currently, Ms. Collins serves as the founder of the Chicago Neighborhood Alliance, a coalition-building organization centered on empowering activists and organizers around the reduction of gun violence in the city of Chicago. Ms. Collins was selected as a feature in 100 Black Women of Chicago, honoring her dedication to community service and leadership. She recently co-authored her first bill that was passed into law, the Illinois Council on Women and Girls Act. Ms. Collins serves on several boards including, Women’s March- Illinois chapter, Chicago International Peace Movement, and I Grow Chicago. Currently, she serves as the Chairwoman for the Illinois State Council on Women and Girls.

Register now to honor Kina Collins at our Annual Women Who Dared cocktail reception and fundraiser on Wednesday, October 3, 2018 at 6 PM.