Calgary, AB, Tuesday, November 20, 2018 – YW Calgary is proud to host the 8th annual YWHISPER Fundraising Gala featuring keynote speaker Terry Crews at the TELUS Convention Centre.

Mr. Crews is an action-movie hero, sitcom star, former NFL player and an outspoken activist on masculinity and gender roles having been called “one of the most progressive and thoughtful voices in gender criticism” by Jezebel.

Earlier today, YW was thrilled to provide a unique opportunity for some Calgary students to be part of a conversation with Mr. Crews. The students of Nelson Mandela High School were surprised and excited by the entrance of Mr. Crews during an assembly. Mr. Crews answered questions posed by leadership students about gender roles, activism and stereotypes and inspired the audience to think differently.

“YW was thrilled to create an unforgettable memory for more 1,800 students at Nelson Mandela High School with the surprise visit of Terry Crews,” says Sue Tomney, Chief Executive Officer of YW Calgary. “Hearing Mr. Crews’ message of being an ally and advocate is critical for this generation. These are the young people who can change how they define gender roles, their expectations and how to create space for healthy and respectful relationships and communities.”

Tonight at the 8th annual YWHISPER Gala, Mr. Crews will inspire more than 950 attendees to rethink masculinity in relation to gender equality and feminism and how critical men’s roles as advocates for women’s issues is today. This has been a year of speaking out and speaking up for women and with women across North America. Mr. Crews has been a significant part of the energy as the first man in Hollywood to speak up in support of the #MeToo movement.

The excitement and anticipation of YW’s keynote resulted in the event selling out a week before the event, a first in YW’s history. This year’s YWHISPER Fundraising Gala is also the largest YW has ever hosted bringing together more than 950 guests, donors and sponsors who will raise their voices for vulnerable women in our community. The increase in attendees and sponsors is in part due to an engaged, motivated and diverse Gala Task Force committee who volunteered to make this event YW’s most successful. It’s also a reminder of how committed Calgarian’s are to making their communities safer and more equitable for everyone.

“This is my second year as YWHISPER Gala Committee Chair and I continue to be amazed by the work of our volunteer committee,” says Shannon Young, YW Board Member. “It’s because of their dedication and efforts we sold out well in advance of tonight’s event. I am so grateful for Calgarian’s support of this important organization and am so looking forward to the conversations that are sure to start as a result of tonight’s event.”

The highly-anticipated event will raise funds to support YW Calgary programs and services which empower women and their families while advocating for women’s safety, social and economic rights.

For more information on YW Calgary, please visit www.ywcalgary.ca.


 About YW Calgary:

YW Calgary is the largest and longest serving women’s organization in Calgary. Since 1991, we have worked with men through our counselling programs to help build safe and equitable communities. For more than 107 years, we have focused on enhancing women’s safety and well-being while advocating for equity. In 2017, the YW Calgary supported more than 5,500 Calgary women and families. Together with our donors, government and other social agencies, we provide shelter, supportive housing, counselling, child development, childcare, education and employment programs that help move women from crisis to stability.

Women-centred. Brighter-future focused.


For information please contact:

Carla Link

Manager, Marketing & Communications, YW Calgary

Cell: 587.228.8663 l Email: clink@ywcalgary.ca