June 26, 2019

Olivia’s Parting Thoughts

I’d like to formally introduce myself:

My name is Olivia Moorer; I have worked at YWCA Spokane for a year as the Communications Assistant in the Development Department. If you follow us on Facebook, read our blogs, or participate in our donor campaigns, then you are familiar with my work. I came to YWCA Spokane the summer before my senior year at Gonzaga to exercise my talents in writing and design, as well join a team passionate about social justice and advancing the rights of all people. I earned my degrees in English Literature and Women’s and Gender Studies, and felt a natural connection between what I was studying and the work of YWCA Spokane.

Through this position, I have had such incredible opportunities to dive deep into issues that matter to me, as well as discover complexities in achieving justice I never knew existed. As a woman who understands the difficulties domestic violence poses, I felt compelled to advocate for survivors and explore the ways domestic violence can occur. Through attending trainings with our advocates, working with them to understand power and control, as well as speaking with survivors to help share their story, YWCA Spokane has provided me much fulfillment in my role.

Additionally, I have had the opportunity to learn so much through my role here. Between understanding the interconnections between human trafficking and domestic violence; the ways housing policies can harm survivors; or the rates of intimate partner violence among teens, this agency has taught me new lessons on justice issues that often go unseen constantly. Each week provided me with a new adventure, a new way to ignite my passion for the YWCA mission. And even through the moments of packaging letters or tracking expenses, that overarching mission remained a constant in my work. Even in the most mundane of moments, the work made a difference. Each project here leads to the same outcome: promoting peace, justice, dignity, and freedom for all.

Despite many amazing projects I have had the opportunity to be involved in, what makes YWCA Spokane is deeply special is the people. Each week, our team had the pleasure of having a volunteer named Jim come in to help us with various projects. Jim served in the Air Force for many years, has explored the world and has seen history unfold. Jim works on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons. He brings our team chocolates on Valentine’s Day, event assistance during Spring Fling, and stories from his weekend every Tuesday. He brings generosity and kindness, and most of all, perspective. As someone who fought for the freedom for not just his country people’s lives, but the freedom for others, I have found it fascinating that Jim chooses to spend his afternoons entering data and recording information. He could easily take a nap or go on a drive, and he deserves to. But as a person who dedicated much of their life to promoting peace, justice, dignity, and freedom for all, perhaps a nap won’t fulfill Jim. Perhaps what is fulfilling is making a difference in the ways we know best. For Jim, that is data entry. For me, that has been communications work, whether it be a blog, a post, or a letter. It’s often easy to say we don’t have the resources to make a difference. It’s even easier to be overwhelmed. But if we use our talents for others, and we do that together, achieving a mission becomes less a vision and more a reality. YWCA Spokane is full of people using their talents for the good of others. Teachers, artists, advocates, accountants; everyone is joined in that central mission to eliminate racism and empower women. I am not a counselor or lawyer, but through my passion for writing and creating, I had the opportunity to make a difference for survivors in ways that bring me joy. That has truly been a gift.

I am parting ways to pursue my Masters in English Literature at Loyola University Chicago this Fall, in the hopes to become a professor of English Literature and Women’s and Gender Studies. As I applied for this program, each of my professors found my experience at YWCA Spokane to be one that would set me apart from other candidates; that this organization would instill lessons on justice that a novel or lecture could never fully dive into. Thank you, YWCA Spokane, for all you’ve taught and given me; and even more, for all you do for everyone who walks through the front doors here. I promise to be a Y Woman for life.

In gratitude,

Olivia Moorer

P.S.: See my favorite stories here!

TEEN DATING VIOLENCE awareness month


hud ruling may harm lgbtq survivors

And my all-time favorite project:



By: Olivia Moorer

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