To our partners, our city, and our state:
It’s been six years since Saint Louis was the forefront of international headlines showing the beginning of the Black Lives Matter movement in response to the death of Michael Brown. A history of inequitable public policy, police brutality, and accepted discriminatory attitudes led to an outcry for change.
Today, the pain is even greater with the COVID-19 pandemic taking lives, jobs, and educational opportunities from many. The same message Black Lives Matter started with has become amplified. Demonstrators from across the nation, in metropolises and rural towns, and of every socioeconomic upbringing are uniting to take to the streets and speak up against racial injustice. We applaud peaceful demonstrations and taking advantage of one of our most powerful first amendment rights.
For 22 years, ARCHS’ efforts have evolved with news headlines and the needs of our neighborhoods. Now more than ever, ARCHS is committed to serve chronically under resourced St. Louisans to disrupt cycles of intergenerational poverty and trauma. We strategically work hands-on with our funded partners to create successful child care facilities, schools, youth development programs, and workforce development initiatives.
In the coming weeks, ARCHS will be announcing new investments that will address the unmet, and often ignored needs, of crime victims and victimized communities. This is an example of ARCHS’ focus on long-term systems building.
As we unfortunately stand at the same intersections of deep-rooted racial animosity, poverty, unemployment, and lack of educational opportunity, ARCHS will renew its efforts to advance equitable public policy that makes profound and meaningful differences in people’s lives.
Wendell E. Kimbrough
ARCHS Chief Executive Officer