December 10, 2020
Kudos to the YW's Knetta Adkins and Alexandria Means! Both have been selected from more than 100 applicants to participate in the Birmingham Women's Initiative.
The group consists of "people right here in our community who are poised to act to ensure the rights of women exist in a most excellent way." They received a letter from Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin and participated in the Women’s Initiative Kick-off/Orientation on Dec. 10.
“This honor means the future generations of Birmingham’s women will have the groundwork to achieving a safer, inclusive, and more equitable life,” Adkins said.
Means is Client Services Manager in the YW's Domestic Violence Services Department. She develops and leads a team to implement advocacy and counseling programs to assist clients who experience domestic violence in achieving positive outcomes. She has worked for the YW for more than five years. In 2018, she became the 18th Nationally Certified Forensic Counselor with a specialization in Domestic Violence in Birmingham (the 65th in Alabama and 322nd in the United States). In the same year, Means became the only Nationally Certified Domestic Violence Advocate as a Domestic Violence Intervention Specialist in Birmingham. She has two adult sons, Jumari and Kaulin.
Adkins is the YW's Coordinator of Community Education and Advocacy. She received her B.A. in psychology from The University of Virginia in Charlottesville and her M.S. from Rowan University in Stratford, NJ. Adkins developed a strong sense of devotion for service within the nonprofit sector after a summer serving in marginalized communities in Cape Town, South Africa in 2006. The experience gave her a deep appreciation for how nonprofits seek to improve the quality of life for communities, one program at a time. She has earned certification as a Childbirth Doula with DONA International and serves on the Birth Equity Subcommittee with DONA International, which serves to reduce maternal health disparities and improve outcomes for birthing families.
The Women’s Initiative is an international, intergenerational and survivor-centered approach to addressing direct violence, structural violence and cultural violence that affect the women and girls of Birmingham. This initiative will be led by Birmingham women appointed by Mayor Randall Woodfin.
These women will work to solve issues through research, policy/advisory and community engagement. By focusing on women, the Office of Peace and Policy aims to interrupt the pipeline of violence at its inception to support intergenerational change.
To learn more about the Women’s Initiative, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.