As 2021 draws to a close, I am filled with immense gratitude. No doubt, this year has in some ways been even more difficult than 2020. The expectancy that it would be different, “back to normal,” quickly faded as the Delta variant and its effects continued COVID’s hold on many activities we had long missed. But, in the midst of it all, I’ve found the blessings that are sustaining me through it all.
First, I am overwhelmed with appreciation for the Policy Center staff members. They continue to show up for the girls and their families, dive deeper into research so we can better understand the needs of those we serve, advance the policy platforms and support each other in such an impactful way.
This year, we continue to meet the needs of girls and their families in new and creative ways, holding tightly to our mission to be there for girls wherever and whenever they need us. We have expanded our program models to include additional schools and community sites, released two major research reports, and engaged the community in See the Girl Day which included a proclamation by Mayor Curry honoring Mrs. Weaver and Jacksonville’s commitment to girls. All the while, we’ve held each other up – laughing, crying, and pressing on together to reach our common goal, to always See the Girl.
Second, I’m thankful to each and every one of our community partners who, while navigating their own organizational challenges, still stood with us to provide girls and their families with the services, support, and resources they needed in their times of crisis. Without our community partners, we could not do the work we do.
Finally, I am eternally grateful for each of you. For each of you, I imagine the past year brought its unique personal and professional obstacles. In the midst of it all, you remained committed to See the Girl and join us in the work to ensure a safe, equitable community where all girls can grow and thrive.
I’m reminded of the girls we’ve served who once shared with me, that many times they have thoughts of giving up hope but then they walk through the Policy Center’s doors and are greeted by the staff who are so excited to see them. Girls share that the staff and space of the Policy Center make them feel welcomed and seen even when they feel unseen in every other part of their lives.
Our ability to provide this environment for the girls we serve is directly linked to the kindness and generosity each of you show towards the Policy Center. As we move into this holiday season, I hope that each of you experience that same generous and kind spirit in your own lives. We will stay connected and keep you up to date in the coming year. For the latest Policy Center developments, or to give in the form of a donation or pledge. Please visit seethegirl.org/donate, or seethegirl.org/pledge.
Wishing you and those you love a most meaningful holiday season,
President & CEO