SAA Update- July 3, 2020

2 Important Snapshots – Full Update NEXT WEEK

SAA volunteers learn about slavery
on The Whitney Plantation and the Gulf Coast.

SAA’s Commitment to help end Systemic Racism
Over 170 of SAA volunteers would have been in NOLA the last two weeks – building homes, diving into an amazing culture and most importantly learning about Black History and its deep impact on our nation.

It is also important to share with you that SAA has been asked to support our region and our families since the passing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota on May 25, 2020.  As part of our NOLA trips, we thoughtfully educate our volunteers about black history with black stories while peeling back the layers of systemic racism.

As you know, we were founded and created by the King Classic basketball event that honored Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Pastor Pat Wright and Randy Novak have worked with the King Center & heroes from the Civil Rights era since 1998 to bring awareness of systemic racism to the Pacific Northwest.  SAA has been a leader in courageous conversations since its inception.

Slave quarters and large vats
used to make sugar by the enslaved.

Over the years, members of Shirts Across America’s team have worked with the King Center, Whitney Plantation, and St. Aug’s in Treme, Museum of Tolerance and members of SNCC & SCLC.  This has led to numerous corporations, schools and other non-profits to ask for SAA’s support with pieces of our curriculum during this important time.

As members of the SAA family, you can also expect support from us prior to your trip regarding Race in America.  Our goal has always been to educate as we come together as one community.  We hope you will utilize the tools SAA provides you to further understand the effects slavery has had on our country.  SAA hopes to thoughtfully present our country’s tragic past, while allowing us to acknowledge its negative impact on the black community.  This is a critical time in our country’s history, we intend to be an advocate for change & healing, while embracing this important opportunity to move forward.

SAA Trips are Postponed until 2020-21 year
SAA volunteer families are and will remain our primary focus. We have been in constant communication with health officials and were anxiously waiting to hear if we would be able to travel with two small groups of volunteers in August.  We had hoped to reach out to our families in Mid-June with our trip schedule but the protests taking place raised the chances that a new wave of COVID-19 would hit the Pacific Northwest and New Orleans.

On Monday, we were informed that dozens of students from the UW greek system had tested positive for the virus.  This new development has dictated we focus our attention to our upcoming trips for the 2020-21 school year.  Thanks to you our SAA families, you provided some incredible feedback and ideas on how we can support our recent high school graduates.  We are excited to share those options with you next week.  

Next Thursday, you will be receiving a comprehensive email from us outlining in detail our plans moving forward.  Your patience has been greatly appreciated as we are dealing with many governing bodies to make the most informed and safe decisions for you and your family.

Please enjoy the holiday weekend.  In the meantime, stay safe, healthy and be a positive voice for others during this important time.