In 2003, the YWCA Pekin became the home of the Coalition for Equality. The group meets on the second Tuesday of each month at 4:00 p.m. at the YWCA. The public is invited to attend and share their ideas to assist the Coalition in meeting its purpose:
- To foster a spirit of human understanding
- To promote equal opportunity
- To eliminate discrimination
We hope you will join us at our next meeting.
Annual programs and activities of the Coalition for Equality include:
Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration
The 21st Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration was held on Saturday, January 18th at the Pekin Public Library. Featured speakers were Doris Symonds and Denise Moore, who discussed women in the Civil Rights movement. We will also had performances from local school children and announced the winners of the Carolyn Noonan Memorial Grants for Children.
Carolyn Noonan Memorial Grants for Children
Private donations fund these grants in memory of Carolyn Noonan, a key member of the Coalition for Equality for many years. Grants are usually available in October of each year, and winners are announced at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration.
Feeding Through Reading
The Coalition distributes children's books to low income families through local food pantries. Recent selections have included a biography on Harriet tubman, Martin's Big Words, and Baby Faces.
Stand Against Racism
We will sponsor our Fifth Annual Stand Against Racism on Friday, April 25, 2014. The event is held to raise awareness that racism still exists in our communities and that it cannot be ignored or tolerated. Our objective is to bring organizations together, who believe like we do, that united we can eliminate racism.
Marigold Festival Art Project
Each September, the Coalition hosts a booth at the Marigold Festival and provides a free art project for children. Projects reflect the purpose of the Coalition and have included making muticultural puppets, learning about the Freedom Riders, and "Planting a Dream," which highlighted the cooperation between Senator Everett Dirksen and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to secure the passage of the Civil Rights Act.