How do we even begin to reflect on 2020? A year that was unlike any other, highlighting the inequalities of our political, economic, and social system, while also demonstrating the strength of our communities.Luigi Fu, YNPNsfba 2021 Co-Chair
COVID-19 is ravaging our neighborhoods, forcing us to shelter-in-place, find new ways to connect and work, and showing us the highs and lows of virtual interactions. The economic fallout from the pandemic decimated our local businesses and communities, with our friends and families laid off from their jobs, and revealing the weaknesses of our safety nets. George Floyd’s murder demonstrated, once again, the inequities of our justice system and its apparent disregard for Black lives, but it reignited the Black Lives Matter movement and pushed us to reflect on our own anti-Black practices.
In response, we came together to form mutual aid funds, advocated for better organizational and public policies, and showed the creativity and transformative ideas from our community. We cannot change the past, but how we respond to the events determine who we are as people and as organizations. At YNPNsfba, we are determined to take the lessons from 2020 and carry them forward with us through 2021 and beyond.
Last year, we launched the COVID-19 Relief Fund at the start of the pandemic to provide financial support for folks who were laid off from their nonprofit jobs. This was the first time our organization ran a mutual aid fund/financial assistance program. We recognized how powerful these funds can be, especially in responding to a disaster, and we are committing ourselves to look into other ways we can use our financial resources to support our members and the nonprofit sector.
Black Lives Matter is not a statement, it is a practice, a way of being, a promise that pushes us to be better so that we, as both individuals and a society, will no longer tolerate racism. YNPNsfba is committed to improving our individual and organizational practices so that we do not harm our Black, Indigenous, and POC colleagues, no matter how good our intentions are.
How can we describe 2020? It was a year in which we held a mirror to ourselves and it showed us where we still need to go. If we do not learn from our reflections, then we are doomed to repeat history. Let us never forget the trials and tribulations of 2020 because it showed us our path forward.