Community Engagement Specialist
2020 has been labeled by many as an unprecedented year. Since March, almost 300,000 people have lost their lives to COVID-19. Countless others have recovered, but they are now living with the medical conditions as a result of contracting this disease. Racial and civil unrest was at an all-time high, with an unprecedented amount of people protesting to seek justice. The unemployment rate is high, small businesses are closing and our children are suffering as a result of distant learning. 2020 is the year none of us will forget.
Alliance for Greater Works, like most businesses, had to pivot and adapt to the current climate. Our work transitioned from in-person meetings and trainings to Virtual Town Hall Meeting and webinars. Our staff transitioned and has worked remotely since mid-March. Our focus was to continue to offer the same quality of service, although we had to change our methods and procedures. Zoom meetings became our primary method of communication. The sustainability of our work hinged on our ability to pivot.
As a result of this adaptation, Alliance created a 6-part Town Hall Series to address the concerns of our clients, the communities we serve and this nation. The Town-Hall Series included, Well- Being in Rural Communities: Town Hall Meeting in March, the Special COVID-19 Town Hall Meeting in April, And How Are the Children: Learn how COVID-19 is Impacting Children’s Mental Health in May, Dismantling Racial Trauma: A Call to Action for Leaders, Organizations and Communities in June, Back to School: Making Sure Our Children Aren’t Left Behind in August, and From Protest to Policy: System Change at Grassroots Level in September. Each Town Hall meeting consisted of a panel of experts from around the country who shared invaluable information to facilitate change and growth in each area.
2020 has also served as a teacher. It has revealed the best in us, and the worst in us. We experienced extreme lows this year, a pandemic, racial injustice, hurricanes, fires, etc., but we also witnessed our fellowman come together in unity to fight for change. Oftentimes our perception determines our reality. If there is any hope at all, and there is, the definition of success changed this year. Success is not found in accomplishments and achievements. Success is that you made it. You endured a year filled with twists and turns, unexpected surprises, yet you made it. As we enter Christmas season, please remember, Jesus is the reason for the season. And if we have Jesus, we have hope!