On Aug. 12, 2017, violence broke out at a white supremacist rally called Unite The Right, and a woman was killed after a man drove his car into a crowd of counter-protesters. It was a Saturday that left many Americans horrified. Although it's been a year since the rally, activists have continued to honor the life of the woman, who was a 32-year-old activist named Heather Heyer. And you, too, can help the foundation named after her, which was created just nine days after her death, according to NPR.
On their website's information section, organizers for the Heather Heyer Foundation explain their vision: "The Heather Heyer Foundation was created to honor Heather Heyer, a young civil rights activist, who dedicated her life to promoting equal rights for all people. The Foundation has established a scholarship program to provide financial assistance to individuals passionate about positive social change."
One of the ways you can help the Heather Heyer Foundation is by donating money to the organization. Its website offers optional amounts to give on a one-time or monthly basis — whatever you like — but you can also choose your own amount and frequency. Additionally, you can even leave a comment below on the foundation's donation page.
If you can't donate, don't worry. You can also help Heather Heyer Foundation by raising awareness about the organization on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and other social media networks. More often than not, organizations can do well with exposure on social media to gain supporters and donations. If you explain what Heather Heyer Foundation stands for to your friends and followers, you could help the organization spread awareness about its progressive cause.
Another way to help the Heather Heyer Foundation is by simply reaching out to its board of directors. You can ask if there are any events or collaborative projects that the organization is currently focusing on, and you can ask if you can help them somehow. At the moment, the organization's founders are Heyer's mother, Susan Bro, and Alfred Wilson. Other members of the board are Chief Financial Officer Charles Allbaugh as well as Michael Malloy, Chad Morganlander, and Shinica Thomas who manage community engagement and other tasks, according to the website.
Last year's right-wing white supremacist rally claimed the lives of two other people apart from Heyer. According to authorities, two members of the Virginia State Police troopers died in a separate helicopter crash. In light of last year's violence, where white supremacists openly chanted anti-Semitic slogans, current Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced a state of emergency on Wednesday.
The state of emergency would be enforced from Aug. 10 to Aug. 12. Joining Northam in his decision was Charlottesville’s Interim City Manager Mike Murphy. "We have learned many lessons from the tragic events of Aug. 12, 2017," Murphy said in a statement. "For the anniversary of that difficult August weekend which resulted in three lost lives, the City of Charlottesville, Albemarle County, and the University of Virginia are working closely with law enforcement and public safety agencies from around Virginia to plan for potential events and to keep our city safe from violence."
With white supremacists planning a Unite the Right 2 rally this weekend in Washington, D.C., the Heather Heyer Foundation might be planning a counter-protest or separate event. You can always find out by emailing email@example.com.