Racial Equity Garden

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YWCA Elgin Racial Equity Garden is a collaborative resource of articles, books, a website, and experiences that the YWCA Elgin Board of Directors, staff, and community members have found helpful in the understanding of racial justice issues.

The Racial Equity Garden strives to include resources on various racial and ethnic communities (African American, LGBTQ+, Asian, Latinx, and religious +).

We want to hear from you! Did you watch or read something on this list? Let us know what you thought, and what conversations it started with those in your household. Share on social using #RacialEquityGarden and tag @ywcaelgin. Have a favorite that’s not on this list? We’d love to hear it! Send us your favorite movies and more that are helpful in the understanding of racial justice issues: info@ywcaelgin.org.

Featured Submission

silence is not an option

Racial Equity Resources

Mature Readers

  • When Dasani Left Home by the New York Times – What happens when trying to escape poverty means separating from your family at 13? This article follows eight dramatic years in the life of Dasani, a girl whose imagination is as soaring as the skyscrapers near her Brooklyn shelter.

For the Whole Family

Mature Readers

  • So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo –  guides readers of all races through subjects ranging from police brutality and cultural appropriation to the model minority myth in an attempt to make the seemingly impossible possible: honest conversations about race, and about how racism infects every aspect of American life.
  • Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival, and Hope in an American City by Andrea Elliot – Andrea Elliott follows eight dramatic years in the life of Dasani, a girl whose imagination is as soaring as the skyscrapers near her Brooklyn shelter. In this sweeping narrative, Elliott weaves the story of Dasani’s childhood with the history of her ancestors, tracing their passage from slavery to the Great Migration north. As Dasani comes of age, New York City’s homeless crisis has exploded, deepening the chasm between rich and poor. She must guide her siblings through a world riddled with hunger, violence, racism, drug addiction, and the threat of foster care. Out on the street, Dasani becomes a fierce fighter “to protect those who I love.” When she finally escapes city life to enroll in a boarding school, she faces an impossible question: What if leaving poverty means abandoning your family, and yourself?

For the Whole Family

The Stand Against Racism Campaign is Run in April Each Year

Our country was founded on the idea of building a government of the people, by the people, for the people. More than two hundred years later, this vision has yet to be fully achieved. The deep-seated systemic racism and inequities that disadvantage communities of color are still woven into the fabric of our institutions today — from civic engagement to economic development, from education to health care, and even the way people of color are portrayed in the media. We must work collectively to root out inequity in our communities and in the institutions that compose our society, and demand justice and equity.

That’s why during YWCA’s annual Stand Against Racism, we are rallying alongside our YWCA sisters across the nation to say We Can’t Wait: Equity and Justice Now!

Mature Viewers


For the Whole Family

  • Coming Together Workshops by Sesame Street – Sesame Street believes in a world where all children can reach their full potential and humanity—and do so in celebration of their races, ethnicities, and cultures. Together with experts, they’ve designed developmentally appropriate resources to help you guide your child to be smarter, stronger, and kinder—and an upstander to racism.

Mature Listeners

For the Whole Family

  • Once There Was a Tree, written and recorded by Chasity Gunn,  former/inaugural Poet Laureate for Elgin. This poem is a part of her series of lynching poems, Sacred Branches. Find more information about Gunn and/or the project at https://chasitywrites.com/
  • Racial Justice Pledge

  • Racial Justice Strategy

  • Racial Justice Toolkit

  • Anti-Racism Statement

  • Subversive Witness Article

  • YWCA Antiracism Discussion Guide

If you would like your event added to the YWCA Elgin Racial Equity Community Calendar, please click here.