The conviction of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd, while welcomed, represents a measure of justice for his family. However, it does not eviscerate injustices in this country, which have allowed rogue police officers and other vigilantes to kill Black and Brown, unarmed people - and then go free. This is a small victory in the war against racial injustice. We will continue the fight.

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Integral to our mission, eliminating racism is part of what we do. Dating back to the 1940’s – decades before the civil rights movement – YWCA Charleston seated a woman of color on its board of directors, and issued an official proclamation condemning segregation. Over the decades, our work has taken many forms, including training, research and consciousness-raising events. For several years, we have had a racial justice advocate working in Kanawha County courts, ensuring victims of domestic violence receive equal treatment and protection under the law. In 2017, YWCA Charleston launched its inaugural Race to End Racism, held in conjunction with YWCA USA’s Stand Against Racism campaign. Guided by our Racial Justice Committee, comprised of members of diverse faiths, ethnicities, races, ages, socio-economic statuses and professions, YWCA Charleston works with a broad spectrum of partners and social justice organizations to address the ways racism is tearing the fabric of our families and communities.

Questions? Want to get involved? 

Contact Shante Ellis, Program Director


Be a part of the conversation and take action!

Learn about Charleston's Historic Triangle District

From 1925-1975, the Triangle District was a vibrant community in Charleston made up of African Americans and immigrants. In the early 1970’s, this community was demolished in the name of urban renewal. With the recent honorary renaming of Court Street to Martin Luther King, Jr. Way, there was a spark of conversation surrounding the importance of this area that was once a part of the Triangle District. On February 25, 2020, YWCA Charleston hosted a special panel to hear the stories of the people who lived and worked in this historical community. 

Learn more about our Implicit Bias Trainings

Learn more about our Race To End Racism

Learn more about the honorary renaming of Martin Luther King Jr. Way

YWCA Charleston Racial Justice Program – Changing Hearts and Minds has been made possible in part by a 2019 grant from The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation.