A COLLABORATION WITH AARP, YWCA, DEPARTMENT OF AGING, OFFICES OF LA COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY, LA CITY ATTORNEY, MACY AFRICAN AMERICAN ART MUSEUM AND THE GUMBO GIRLZ MENTORING GROUP
Los Angeles Chapter of the Links Incorporated, fondly referred to as the LA Links, executed a strategic part of their bold vision for education and community engagement on Saturday, March 11, 2017 in recognition of Women’s Month. Through its alliance with several law enforcement, civic, and service entities the LA Links involved a cross section of the Los Angeles community in a dialogue about the roles and well-being of women. The event took place at the Museum of African American Art, located on the third floor of Macys on Crenshaw. The venue for this community event was no accident. It was important to Los Angeles Links to provide an entre to the available community resources including the art museum which is located in the heart of the community. This was an avenue for exposing the African American Art Museum to those who are unaware of its presence in the community. A tour of the art museum was a side benefit of the Women’s Month Brunch. The project emanated from three of the Links’ facets—The Arts Facet, Health and Human Services and National Trends and Services. Through facet and committee work, the LA Links focus on strategies for supporting and uplifting the communities they serve. This event, the 6th in a series of community and civic focused events starting in summer 2016 and continuing throughout 2017 and beyond, reflected the LA Links presence and involvement with community issues and concerns.
The event had a four-fold purpose: (1) to celebrate Women’s History Month, (2) Introduce awareness about the AARP’s Senior Fraud Program, (3) increase community awareness about the Macys African American Art Museum and it’s myriad programs and activities, and (4) recruit additional volunteers for the Windsor Hills Magnet School-LA Links Mentoring Program. Judging from the lively dialogue, formal evaluation and informal feedback from approximately 100 individuals in attendance, this event was well received. Residents from Senior Multi-Purpose Centers, Senior Housing and other senior groups from the Los Angeles Department of Aging, along with church groups, women’s clubs of all ages, including youth groups were in attendance. Participants each received a complimentary conference bag, lovely invitation and printed programs from the YWCA/LA while brunch was sponsored by AARP and Los Angeles Links Chapter.
The National Women’s Month 2017 celebration focused on the need for women and seniors to be safe. Link Deborah Beavers-Watford, National Trends and Services Chairman served as Mistress of Ceremony assisted by co-chairman Link Pat Miller, who explained the purpose of the Gumbo Girlz Mentoring Program for designated 2nd-4th grade girls who need assistance with reading. The presenters were seasoned professionals who were well-prepared in their respective fields. Link Lisa Nicholas M.D., Chairman of Health and Human Services opened the program with a healthy moment. Informational brochures from the AARP California Senior Fraud Program were distributed. Link Kim Willis, Esq. from the LA City Attorney’s Office and Link Melinda Murray, Esq. from the LA County District Attorney’s office made a presentation after which they responded to questions about safety and fraud issues in the greater Los Angeles community.
Attorney Carla Pittman, President of Los Angeles California Chapter of the Links, Incorporated in commenting about the Women’s Month event indicated that she was most proud of our LA chapter for executing relevant projects, forming alliances with other like-minded agencies to keep our community informed, and for seeking out and identifying presenters with such a diverse range of skills and expertise. We have a responsibility not only to offer quality-civic and educational programs which impart knowledge that is important to our sisters and brothers throughout the diaspora, but also to ensure their well-being and their appreciation for the ‘Arts’. She urges the chapter and the community to stay tuned for the up-coming community events for which the members of Los Angeles Chapter of the Links are so vested.