Community Partnership Success Story: YWCA of Southeast Wisconsin

We could not have picked a better success story to further celebrate MLK Day as an organization on Dr. Martin Luther King Drive, with the mission of eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all. YWCA of Southeast Wisconsin started in 1892 to offer resources to women and their families – from the first auto mechanics training for women in the 1920s to the first racially integrated cafeteria in the Midwest to today’s innovative and progressive initiatives.

“The YWCA of Southeast Wisconsin (SEW) provides three important service areas: basic health and safety rights, empowering education, and allyship and advocacy. These service areas closely align with the pillars and values of Pearson and GED Testing Service’s DEI programs,” said Adora Beard, GED State Relationships and Executive Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Manager.

Through this partnership, participants represent individuals who have been historically marginalized within Wisconsin’s traditional education systems. At YWCA SEW, the leadership strongly believes that genuine equity is realized when those most marginalized can access exceptional resources, leading to outcomes that nurture a future abundant with opportunities.

Jacob Gorges, Mission Program Director at the YWCA SEW, said “this collaboration has positively transformed the lives of nine families in Southeast Wisconsin. This mission was accomplished because of the partnership with GED Testing Service. Through the resources provided by GED Testing Service, the YWCA SEW delivered the highest level of GED products to 131 students.”

The GED Testing Service and YWCA staff members eagerly anticipate the continued progress toward a brighter future for all. The staff and students of YWCA SEW appreciate the collaboration with GED and look forward to the opportunity to work together to advance a more just society by expanding opportunities through equitable educational attainment.

The YWCA SEW gathered over 50 demographic touchpoints of all program participants. Some of the key demographics for the participants in this partnership were:

  •  94% of program participants were people of color
  • 79% self-identified as female
  • 21% self-identified as male
  • 73% were single parents

The GED Community Partnership Program was launched in late 2021 as part of the GED DE&I strategy and its ongoing commitment to creating equitable learning opportunities for underserved and marginalized communities. The program aims to increase access while investing in community organizations that provide education, training, and other critical services.

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