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Join Us in the 40×40 Challenge

By Shelley Carthen Watson, YWCA Minneapolis President and CEO
August 19, 2021
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In the past two years, tens of millions of women around the world have departed the workforce, while also shouldering the brunt of unpaid labor, including schooling and caring for family members. And the latest research shows that fewer women than men will regain work as we recover from the pandemic.

This month, we are joining with the Archewell Foundation and YWCA USA in celebration of the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle’s 40th birthday, to ask women everywhere to contribute 40 minutes of their time to provide community service or mentorship to support women reentering the workforce.

I believe that mentorship is one critical way to support women reentering the workforce. Mentoring women and youth of color is a passion of mine. In the past, I’ve mentored middle school girls to help them strengthen their voices, supported Black high school seniors as they worked toward leadership and achievement, assisted first-generation college students in adjusting to college life, and mentored female law students and attorneys. It is extraordinary, life-changing work. To see someone you’ve mentored shine — it’s one of the most fulfilling gifts.

If you can, please join us and commit 40 minutes of your time to mentor, volunteer or support programs doing this work. Below, we’ve gathered some great local opportunities to contribute to this powerful movement.

YWCA Minneapolis Opportunities

Become a Girls Inc. Program partner or Beacons Role Model to inspire youth and support their learning.

Support our Workforce Development Program and our Early Childhood Education program. Child care was originally created to aid women in going back to work and attaining financial independence. The absence of reliable, affordable child care is one of the largest influences of women leaving the workforce. Donate today.

Local Community Opportunities

Share your commitment with us on social media by using #40×40 and tagging us. Together, we can contribute to a global wave of compassion and positive change.

Make Your 40×40 Pledge