Peninsula Voices for Change Origin Story
Peninsula Voices for Change (PVC) evolved from the Facebook group Pantsuit Nation. Residents of Hampton Roads, VA that were angry, frustrated- some even scared- reached out to each other and began getting coffee, discussing what the road ahead looked like with the change in presidency. The Women's March in DC only fueled this energy and the group grew from 10 to 40 people. A meeting was scheduled for February 2017 at Tabb Library in Yorktown, VA. 40 people were expected; over 130 were present, spilling out of the room and into the hallway. The progressive wave had begun and in this meeting leadership roles were assigned and soon after a name was voted on: Peninsula Voices for Change. Over the next few months task forces were created in different areas: Women's Rights, Environment and Science, Refugee Support, Campaign and Voter Education, Social Justice, Healthcare Reform and Redistricting and members attended meetings for each, creating short term and action focused goals.
Among other accomplishments, PVC has:
- Hosted Town Halls for gubernatorial, house of representative and state delegate candidates, providing constituents with the opportunity to make their voices heard in the presence of future representatives.
- Launched a "Yes We Vote!" campaign online in an effort to engage and inspire voters of all ages via social media.
- Collected over 40 coats for children in Newport News schools
- Collected uniforms for refugee students in Newport News public schools
- Host a table at Williamsburg Farmers Market on Saturdays for voter registration/voter education
- Held several workshops for PVC members, focusing on relevant timely topics, including redistricting reform, religion and politics, citizen activism, and women empowerment.
- Coordinated with Planned Parenthood to create volunteer opportunities for members.
- Sent personal messages of support to Gloucester High School graduate Gavin Grimm, whose case on discrimination in public schools was heard in the Supreme Court.
- Organized a round table event for people of different political affiliations to discuss their beliefs, positions, and ideas in a safe space.