About The YW

YWCA Central Alabama is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all.  

Through the years, YWCA assisted young women in their search for employment (1900s), elevated teen service (1930s) and created opportunities during times of turbulent race relations for Black and white women to plan and develop programs together (1960s).

What We Do

Today, social justice is foundational to the work we do at YWCA Central Alabama. It is who we are. We are a social justice organization.

Built upon that foundation of social justice are three pillars representing our focus areas:

YWCA is on a mission. That takes teamwork.

Mission In Action

Why give to YWCA Central Alabama? YWCA Central Alabama partners with the people we serve to break generational cycles of poverty, systemic racism and violence. We embrace service participants with reassuring programs that support their journey forward. We advocate for them holistically. We empower them to navigate systems in their lives. 

Estd. 1903

Our Legacy

Our Founder, Maybelle Sloss, had a dream in 1903 of a Young Women’s Christian Association to give “hundreds of noble working girls influences which will keep them sweet and womanly in adverse circumstances.” While the language reflects a different time, the message of helping women in “adverse circumstances” is as relevant today as it was at the turn of the last century.
At a time when race relations are turbulent, the central YW seeks a closer tie with the YWCA branch. In 1979, Suzanne Durham, another young woman with boundless energy and commitment, becomes Executive Director of the YWCA. Over the coming years, the YWCA opens a child care program at its downtown location, the Junior Board is formed, and the YWCA assumes operation of the Family Violence Center.
After 20 months of construction, the YWCA moves back to her downtown home. The beautifully restored facility is the result of a successful $10 million capital campaign. The SAIL program is launched as well as the first ever Purse & Passion Luncheon. In the late 2000s, the YW acquires the Interfaith Hospitality House and launches a massive $15 million capital campaign to expand it in Woodlawn. Soon after, the YWCA opens its Family Resource Center that flourishes into multiple different programs.
Retiring CEO Suzanne Durham was recognized. The YWCA Central Alabama Board of Directors named Yolanda Sullivan CEO effective Jan. 1, 2015. The YW Hosts its first "Walk-A-Mile in Her Shoes" as well as the "Domestic Violence Walk." The YW launched several new initiatives in 2016. The SMILE (Single Mothers Invested, Learning, Empowered) program allowed 12 single mothers living in poverty to be trained as dental assistants. In 2019, The YWCA Central Alabama Board of Directors named Patricia Hoban-Moore Interim CEO effective February 2019. Then, they named Dr. LaRhonda Magras as CEO effective Sept. 1, 2019.

Our Team

YWCA Central Alabama’s vision is to create a more caring community. We work every day to make a positive change in the lives of individuals and in the community.