/ 05.07.20 /

Resilience and the W4W community

When it comes to essential workers, women rule, but alas, it’s in industries which are significantly underpaid and undervalued. “Nearly two-thirds (64.4 percent) of frontline workers are women.” Source: Center for Economic and Policy Research

We have had some of the most energizing and amazing conversations with our nonprofits, our business partners, and an expanded network among mission-matched organizations (stay tuned for more on the latter point).  No one is wavering, the commitments among all are stronger than ever. Our model of operation to elevate at-need women towards economic independence through the power of business makes more sense now than ever.

Resilience at our partners

UnShattered pivoted out of the gate when the COVID-19 crisis revealed a startling gap in personal protective gear. They model for us what resilience looks like by shifting from bag-making to mask making to protect frontline healthcare workers. So far, they have provided over 5000 masks to 137 frontline organizations.

Bottomless Closet immediately sought to measure the economic impact of the pandemic by surveying the women they serve – over 300 responses received. 62% have lost jobs since the start of COVID-19, and 67% have no savings to fall back on. Sobering information that prompted them to adapt in-person client engagement to phone and email outreach. They already helped 6 women find employment.

New Women New YorkersRaising Hope, and Girls Inc. of Westchester County quickly adapted programming into the virtual environment. They are working tirelessly to ensure those they support have the ability to be connected during this time and continue moving forward toward their goals.

Resilience at Working for Women

While hearing what our nonprofit partners have been doing, I began pondering what resilience looks like for Working for Women – and our business members. How could we use this time to be resourceful in the face of adversity? Where can we step in and step up?

The following skill-based initiatives are happening this month alone – our largest to date: At ZS, the User Experience team is helping Girls Inc of Westchester look for a long term learning management solution and assessing the effectiveness of their current website in meeting their stakeholder needs.

Another ZS team is conducting a virtual negotiation skill workshop for the women of New Women New Yorkers. The content has been tailored from previous workshops to include considerations for COVID.

SCOUT has developed and is leading an online session for women at Raising HOPE on “Career Essentials: How to Build Your Resume + LinkedIn Profile”.