Empowering Nashville Women and Children through Re-New at the YWCA of Nashville & Middle Tennessee
An interior designer and nurse, partners with the YWCA to furnish homes for women and children
Can you name three ingredients for launching a successful program dedicated to providing women and children in need with completely furnished apartments? You probably wouldn’t have guessed a trip to Swaziland, a high-end interior designer and a well-timed meeting. But that’s exactly how Re-New at the YWCA began this past August.
After a mission trip to Africa to help orphans, interior designer Julie Davis knew that the “design bubble world” she had been living in was forever changed. When she crossed paths with Patricia Glaser Shea, President and CEO at the YWCA, the two formed a powerful partnership and the plans for a program to reuse furniture to renew hope.
In just four months, the Re-New program leaders met their goal for the first year of fully furnishing six apartments for women and children. Davis is joined by Cheryl Hays, a registered nurse, who felt called to join the Re-New cause. Davis says, “Cheryl is the glue of the organization and holds the entire project together. All of the logistical management of Re-New is run by her.” Hays meticulously manages the program’s inventory. “It’s about recycling – if you’re not using it, someone else can. We’re providing a step up and fresh start to these women. We’re making a house into a home,” commented Hays.
Shea, Davis and Hays were amazed by the outpouring of generosity from the Nashville community. While the city was still very much in flood recovery mode, Nashvillians stepped up to kick start the Re-New program. In addition to furniture donations, dedicated volunteers provide a pantry full of food, stock refrigerator staples like milk and eggs, and provide cleaning services prior to the move-in date at each Re-New apartment.
Davis’ trip to Africa was truly a fateful journey, and it has ultimately allowed many other women to embark on new journeys of change and hope. “Re-New empowers women in our community by giving them a home and a new beginning,” remarked Shea. “We’re delighted to join our clients on this journey.”
To inquire about or make an in kind donation, please contact Cheryl Hays at (615) 596-4935 or email@example.com