Cal Wellness has a long history of confronting racial and gender inequity. Our two Women’s Initiatives, which focus on women of color, are the natural evolution in our work. These initiatives aim to give voice to women of color and to meet their needs as essential leaders in our communities. They fuel innovation and advocacy in serving the needs of women of color and inspire our philanthropic peers to join in and contribute to the changes our communities need.
We invite you to learn about our Women's Initiatives. Please note that we're not accepting Letters of Interest for our Women's Initiatives. All projects are already under way.
Black and Latina women represent less than a quarter of all U.S. women, but make up the large majority of women currently living with HIV. HIV/AIDS-related illness is among the leading causes of death for Black women ages 25-34. In addition, women of color in the U.S. have high rates of sexually transmitted infections. That’s why we created two powerful demonstration projects, a sexual health toolkit called RoyalTea, and a public awareness campaign called Upspoken to document, disseminate and raise awareness about best practices for addressing prevention and early intervention for women of color at risk for HIV, AIDS and STIs.
California is home to the largest number of incarcerated adult women in the nation. Due to systemic and structural racism, women of color are overrepresented among those incarcerated at the federal, state and local levels. Once released from jail and prison, formerly incarcerated women face significant barriers to building stable and healthy lives -- exacerbated by racism -- including unemployment and lack of access to education, permanent housing, and health care. Our Re-Entry and Employment Initiative aims to ensure that formerly incarcerated women, especially African American and Latina women, achieve health through financial well-being.
It’s important that we have more champions for this work and for women, whether that is in policy, philanthropy or the community. Please take the baton and join the relay race to advance this life-changing work.Crystal D. Crawford, Program Director