Black Community Members organize Unity Walk

Two members of the city of La Crosse’s Human Rights Commission are organizing a Unity Walk through Rotary Lights on Sunday to create a sense of community and collect donations for local families in need.

The organizers are encouraging Black families from La Crosse and the surrounding area to participate and hope the Unity Walk becomes an annual tradition. The event is being coordinated by Chauncy Turner, Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission, and Jonathan D. Maye-Cates, Human Rights Commission member.

Turner and Maye-Cates have been commissioners together for the past two years, but this is the first event they’ve planned together.

“It just makes sense during the Holiday Season to do something like this. Asking our families to help others within the community is so important and with a 1% black population, we feel participation is attainable,” said Maye-Cates. “These donations might only be a can of soup from someone’s cupboard, but they provide a meal that many people go without daily. Our goal is to be an additional resource for all families around us who are in need.”

Participants should gather in the Radisson Hotel parking lot off of 2nd St. at 4:30 p.m., Sunday, December 20. Signs are encouraged with a theme of “One Community, One City” and “Unity in LaCrosse”

Turner and Maye-Cates will lead the group through the light display at 5 p.m. Additional details may be found at the Facebook page for the event.

“This is a year where families are learning what being together really means. Hardships are on the rise for many, so to include Black families in a peaceful and organized way, while passing along the lessons of giving to those in need, is a great opportunity,” said Turner. “Food banks are now seeing once-donors needing food and the demand is only going to grow worse as the pandemic continues and many remain jobless. We hope this becomes an annual event; a tradition passed on throughout the years. Mark your calendars for December 19, 2021 for the second annual Unity Walk!”

All donations are taken at the entrance to the display by local Rotary members and volunteers. Donations will be used to serve those most in need in our community. This event will take place outside, but social distancing and appropriate face coverings are encouraged. Although both Turner and Maye-Cates are members of the Human Rights Commission, this is not a Commission sponsored event.

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