When I asked You Yes You! dads to use one word to describe how they’re feeling as they prepare to return home to their children and community, I was given a range of emotions:
Coincidently, this is how I feel about the growth of YYY. I still can’t believe a father daughter dance inside a prison in 2014 has turned into such a mighty nonprofit organization. An organization that provides multiple opportunities for incarcerated dads to spend quality time with their children, re-entry resources, therapy, fatherhood classes, advocacy and most importantly, a village that looks beyond mistakes.
Since its inception, I have been the face of YYY, creating the programming, telling stories from my vantage point and anxiously navigating down an unforeseen road. It’s been a challenging yet rewarding road. A road that has led YYY here – a rebranding! We dropped the ‘project’ from our name, updated the logo and refreshed the website. We’ve grown our fundraising base, created invaluable community partnerships, expanded our reach and since 2018, provided fatherhood guidance to over 100 incarcerated fathers.
A YYY re-branding is necessary, not only cosmetically, but we want to show how far we’ve come and how far we can go. While our mission and core values will remain the same, we will not stay static, we will evolve. Our re-branding is a response to our growth in participants, prison facilities, funding, community partners, volunteers and programming. Above all, we want to ensure we stay connected. YYY is no longer about what Ericka thinks and wants. It’s about reflecting the needs of the families we serve ensuring our programs and values stay relevant, responsive and inclusive.
These are additional words YYY dads used to describe how they’re feeling as they prepare to return home to their family. Coincidently, this is how I feel about the future of YYY.