As you know, YWCA Rockford is committed to its mission to eliminate racism, empower women and promote peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. We have been providing services focused on issues faced by individuals within our community for almost 125 years and now serve more than 6,500 women and families each month. We believe in the power of the YWCA to improve our community, facilitate meaningful conversations, and drive collaboration, which is why we are proud to share to two major announcements with you.

First, YWCA Rockford is officially changing its name to YWCA Northwestern Illinois to better reflect our four-county service area. We believe the issues we strive to address – racism, social and economic opportunity inequities, and the associated critical support services – require regional perspectives and collaboration. Our new name reflects our reach and aids clients in locating and accessing our services. With our name change will come changes in our web and e-mail addresses. As of November 1, our web address will be www.ywcanwil.org. Also, please update your records to reflect our new e-mail domain, @YWCANWIL.org.

Second, the YWCA and La Voz Latina will be serving as role models and leaders in nonprofit collaboration. After careful consideration and due diligence by both organizations, the YWCA has agreed to acquire La Voz Latina, which will operate as a department within the YWCA. The acquisition will allow current La Voz Latina staff to continue providing the majority of La Voz Latina’s critical programs and services without interruption, while benefitting from the local and national resources, network, and support of the YWCA.

The YWCA is honored to be a part of La Voz Latina’s future success, and we feel the organizations are uniquely suited for this relationship. Working collaboratively will enable YWCA and La Voz Latina to leverage the relationships, history, and legacies of both organizations. Together, we will not only maintain current La Voz Latina programs and services, but expand and enhance the depth, capacity and impact they have on one of the most underrepresented populations in our community.

This is an exciting time for YWCA Northwestern Illinois, and we are excited about the possibilities for our future. We look forward to our continued work with all of you in the years to come!