YWCA History

YWCA Union County -Herstory

1920 – February 20th, the Elizabeth YWCA was organized.

1921 – January 21st, the building at 1129-1131 East Jersey Street was opened.

1923 – Established a Community Chest, which later became a United Way.

1927 – Mass meeting were held to discuss programs for African American women and girls.

1928 – YWCA campaigned for the appointment of the first Elizabeth female police officer.

1930 – Due to the high unemployment rate after the 1929 stock market crash the YWCA held a conference for 250 unemployed women.

1932 – Founded Elizabeth Community Chest.

1933 – In conjunction with the Emergency Relief Administration, YWCA established a homeless shelter for women and girls, sometimes referred to as a “Relief Shelter for Women.”

1935 – In a collaborative effort, the YWCA developed workers’ rights codes to protect household workers in Elizabeth.

1943 – The YWCA worked with the NAACP locally to form the Urban League

1944 – The YWCA worked with the Victory Farm Volunteer Corps as part of the war effort.

1978 – With growing concern about domestic violence in Union County, a Battered Women’s Project was established, which provided shelter for Union County battered women and their children.   The domestic violence program is later renamed “Project Protect.”

1980 – YWCA of Elizabeth is renamed YWCA Eastern Union County.

1989 – Building underwent a major facelift, transforming the exterior into a modern brick facade with the YWCA’s new national logo proudly etched into the front wall of the building.

1994 – The YWCA established Project Protect’s Court Advocacy Program to provide a consistent and recognized presence in the Superior Family Court and provide court preparation, advocacy and accompaniment for victims.

2001 – As part of a progressive program to respond to the needs of domestic violence victims, the YWCA in conjunction with the Union County Prosecutor’s office and local police municipalities, established Domestic Violence Response Teams within several local communities.

2013 – YWCA Eastern Union County starts Doing Business As (D/B/A) YWCA Union County.

TODAY – YWCA Union County provides emergency shelter and a continuum of housing, counseling and outreach, a children’s program, workforce development and more, and is recognized not only as the comprehensive/lead provider of domestic violence services for Union County, but a leading expert in women’s issues.