Women of Excellence Q&A:
Q. What are the YWCA Women of Excellence Awards?
A. The Women of Excellence Awards were started eleven years ago to recognize women and businesses in our community who go above and beyond the ordinary. Each Spring, nomination forms are made available and anyone in the community can nominate any woman or business they choose in one of several categories including workplace, volunteerism, emerging leader, support services, and employer of excellence.
Q. How are the Lifetime of Achievement and Future Leader nominees picked?
A. These are the only two categories that don’t come from the general public. Each high school or homeschool cooperative can choose one senior girl as their future leader candidate. The Lifetime of Achievement nominations come from the YWCA Board of Directors and Women of Excellence Steering Committee, and are the only winners that are announced before the awards ceremony.
Q. When are the winners announced in the other categories?
A. The winners are revealed at the Women of Excellence Awards on Thursday, June 21st at Civic Arena from 11:30 AM – 1 PM. We had had around 1,000 guests at this major fundraiser each of the last several years. At the Awards, each nominee is recognized and a winner is named in each category. The winners do not know they were chosen until their name is announced that day. It is always fun to see their surprise as they approach the stage to accept their awards.
Q. What else takes place at Women of Excellence?
A. Keynote speaker Jennifer Bertrand will tell us about her personal achievements – from winning season three of HGTV’s Design Star to becoming full-time mom and a small business owner. You will also hear a little about the YWCA programs that you support by attending Women of Excellence.
Q. What YWCA programs are supported by Women of Excellence?
A. The programs supported are all part of our Women’s Resources department, and include:
JUMP – a mentoring program for pregnant and parenting teens. This program works to keep teen parents in school and taking good care of their babies, and has been highly successful.
ENCOREplus – a breast cancer education program. ENCOREplus gives presentations to thousands of women (and men) each year on how to detect and prevent breast cancer. It also targets minority women who might not know how to access free or low-cost mammograms.
Mom’s Time – a parenting education and stress-relief program for mothers with young children who face challenges such as poverty, special needs, etc. Childcare is provided during meetings so the moms can have time to learn about positive parenting techniques, community resources, educational opportunities, etc.
Choices – a life skills group for middle school girls. This program works with at-risk girls in St. Joseph middle schools to help them make good life choices as they enter the teen years. It works to prevent risky behaviors and increase self-esteem.
Q. How can I attend Women of Excellence?
A. Tickets are $35 each and can be reserved by calling 816.232.4481 by June 1st
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