The YWCA’s most recent expansion, YWoodlawn, has grown exponentially since its groundbreaking in 2009. Initially consisting of the YWCA’s acquisition of the Interfaith Hospitality House, the YWoodlawn Revitalization Initiative is an ongoing effort that has transformed several acres of once blighted housing into an award-winning neighborhood.
Although many of us are aware that domestic violence is a real problem, what we don’t know is how often it happens, and just how close it can be to our lives. Nationwide, 1 in 4 women will become victims of domestic violence; these victims may be family, coworkers, neighbors or friends. To add to these staggering facts, there are 145 domestic violence incidents every hour in the United States alone, and still there are many cases of violence each day that go unreported.
Over 1,300 friends and supporters, old and new, came to the Downtown Sheraton Hotel Ballroom on April 24 for the 15th Annual Purse & Passion Luncheon to honor and support the services offered by the YWCA. Being the 15th Purse & Passion, the theme of this year’s luncheon was “Honoring the Past, Celebrating the Present and Looking Towards the Future.” The Purse & Passion Luncheon is the YWCA’s single largest fundraiser.
Rev. Stephanie York Arnold is a pastor at Birmingham First United Methodist Church. She is passionate about serving in a downtown church because it provides her the opportunity to truly embrace a diverse group of people and live out her church’s mission statement to be an OPEN place for ALL. Stephanie is a graduate of the University of Alabama and Memphis Theological Seminary. She and her family have been residents in Birmingham since 1999.