AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – This April, the Center for Women and Community (CWC) celebrates five decades of work with a variety of events, awards, and more.

The CWC is one of the oldest continually operating women’s centers in the country that provides leadership and advocacy to the University of Massachusetts Amherst, the Five Colleges, and Hampshire County since 1972, according to a news release from the CWC.

The center offers workshops and training on topics such as healthy relationships, consent, and bystander intervention to student groups and organizations throughout the county. CWC also provides short-term counseling services for individuals, using a strengths-based perspective. Counselors also refer clients to local therapists and other community resources.

The CWC has a team of 50 to 75 volunteers who help with staffing their 24-hour SASA Hotline, providing peer counseling, contributing to the creation of violence-prevention campaigns, planning community events, and more.

On April 4, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., the CWC will be celebrating its 50th anniversary with an all day drop-in event that will feature a museum-style exhibit, guest speakers, awards highlighting the people who have been a part of our story, live performances, a silent auction, and more.

The ‘Supporting Our Story’ Award will be given out to supporters in recognition of their contributions to EWC/CWC. The award recipients include UMASS and community partners who supported the mission and helped the organization become what it is today.

The CWC will also be awarding its first-ever scholarship, the ‘Your Intervention Strategies’ scholarship. This represents bystander options to make a difference in the community. There will also be a silent auction that will feature experiences, adventures, services, and items all donated from local businesses in support of their mission. The auction has a preview that is available now through April 5 at 6:00 p.m.

Other event highlights include:

  • Listening to acapella by UMASS Note-curious and Drumming and guitar by Iréne “I-Shea” Shaikly
  • Read historic poems from Audre Lorde, Marge Piercy, and others featured at the National Women’s Poetry Festival (1974).
  • Make your own healed heart, protest button or empowerment bracelet.
  • Learn how conversations around consent and violence prevention have evolved.
  • Watch videos of past Body Politics, PROPS, and other events.
  • Add your artistic touch to a community ‘Take Back the Night’ banner.
  • Hear campus and community speakers.
  • And more.