Austin women’s center equipped to empower local women

The new center celebrates its grand opening Saturday, October 25. (Credit: Amanda Brandeis)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin women will have a new place to meet up and find resources come Saturday. The Women’s Community Center of Central Texas is opening a new facility on San Antonio Street. The group says it will be a hub where women from all walks of life can come together and support one another. It was the brainchild of Carrie Tilton-Jones. Women are invited to let go of insecurities, doubt and fear.

One of the first things you notice when walking inside is powerful art on the walls.

“The pieces were inspired by me going through some old diaries I had from when I was 10-years-old,” said artist Paloma Mayorga. “It was sad to me to see the ways I described myself.”

The art features words from other women who have gone through similar hardships. One piece reads:

“You can’t handle the depth of pain I’ve experienced, the pain I’ve inflicted on my body with the choices I’ve made is just as damaging as a perpetual pain my body inflicts on me.”

“I’d like there to be a place in Austin where people can meet up, have education, have resources and have fun together,” said Julie Gillis, director of development and volunteer coordinator.

The founders of the Women’s Community Center of Central Texas hope this facility will fill that gap.

“There’s a really amazing one in San Francisco, big cites like Chicago and New York City,” said Gillis, “but it will be really great to have one in Central Texas.”

The center is equipped with a library, computers, a children’s play area and a meeting space available for women’s groups and women-friendly groups. They also provide online resources, including affordable child care, legal services and crisis assistance. The center will also host events and workshops on various topics to help women and girls, including self-care, technology and finance.

“What I hope a center like this does is allow women to learn how to think critically and make really strong choices they feel proud about,” said Gillis.

The grand opening is Saturday, October 25 at the new facility located at 1704 San Antonio St. It will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., featuring face painting, free food and more.

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