For me giving of my self to a cause that I care deeply about is awesomely gratifying. It started young when I gave to the felt-lined brass bowl that was handed to me at mass. Clank. In dropped the quarter, and I felt so good about it. Then I handed it to someone walking down the aisle and poof, off it went to go somewhere and to do something. Hundreds of candy bars, Krispy Kreme Donuts and Florida Fruit Boxes later I can attest that it ALL was worth it.
Fast forward through my initiation into the Family Foundation Membership Club and voila, I was shot out of a cannon, ready to go. Every thing made sense to me from the crying children on TV to Girl Scout cookies, to saving the trees, oceans, whales, you name it, I was giving to it.
Then justice and equality came calling and it forever changed me. I was awakened to the realities that lingered within me since I was very little. Life just ain’t fair sometimes and we need to do something about it. So I listened and I learned and I got inspired and I got fired up. Finding fellow justice fighters was easy, finding the way to fully support ideas and action was a little bit more difficult.
I guess I was in the right place at the right time and got exposed to injustice at many different levels. What bubbled up to the surface was a desire to defend the rights for women. Being a woman myself put me about two feet in front of the finish line. How would I know the effort it was going to take to complete the race? Why was this so agonizingly hard to not only uphold policies and laws in support of women, but to also make great strides to keep breaking through that proverbial glass ceiling?
God bless the gift of an all-girls high school education that cloaked me in invincibility and set the stage early on for what was about to be 20 years striving for full participation of women in the social, economic and political fabric of North Carolina. Alongside some of the greatest thinkers and doers of a generation before, during and coming up, we created a moment that changed the way we achieve justice and equality.
Women AdvaNCe was born out of that moment. The need to hear and be heard was thunderous. So with fellow sisters in the cause we trotted out the idea that if you connect, inform and engage women then lasting change will happen. After much head scratching and just plain determination the plan was ready for implementation. And the more we told the story that we could create an entity that would deliver data driven, well written stories about issues that women cared about like the Economy, Health and Education and make it easier to digest the more we would get support for it. Five years later and we are stepping into the space where we wanted to be all along. A trusted source of information and action for women and their families in North Carolina.
Belief that collectively and with the right tools and armament women could learn, lead and transform a state is powerful stuff. That’s why I am in it for the long haul. That’s what I have in Women AdvaNCe, a fervent belief that if we work together, using best practices, that we can surmount the obstacles that have held us down for too long. That’s why my energy and my resources are going to place a marker on this roadmap to justice and equality for ALL North Carolinians. On Giving Tuesday I will wake up and make every call, write every email, have every coffee shop conversation about what is good for us in North Carolina. That good is supporting Women AdvaNCe in as many ways as I can. And I invite you to join me. You can be the difference in reaching out to more women across North Carolina. With your donation you could feel that enormous lift in your spirit knowing that you too have placed a marker for you, your family and your fellow citizens of North Carolina.