Alanna Taylor’s passion for helping women over the age of 40 stems from tremendous setbacks she faced in her early 40s. As a result, Taylor was forced to reinvent, reestablish, and restabilize herself. While researching existing programs and best practices, she stumbled upon a TedTalk by Liz White, an advocate for older adults facing uncertain work and financial insecurity. White’s TedTalk was based on her book, 55, Underemployed, and Faking Normal, and her presentation resonated deeply in Alanna’s heart. She realized she was not alone in facing these trials and set her mind to ensure she would create a community where other women wouldn’t feel alone and could feel supported.
As an OSI-Baltimore Community Fellow, Taylor will lead her program The Bronze Girl Collective. Targeted to Black women over the age of 40, The Bronze Girl Collective will be a secured space to provide resources for housing security, mental and physical health, career and financial stability, educational growth, and cultural enrichment. Her goal is to diminish the disproportionate number of Black women who could end up experiencing homelessness or living in poverty with untreated mental and physical conditions. Her outreach is tailored to those who reside in Baltimore and do not have a strong network of supportive friends and family in close proximity.
Taylor’s initiative empowers women to take charge of rebuilding their life by allowing them to design a eight-week program based on their needs and feedback. Some programs may address financial literacy, while others may address home clutter and organization in direct correlation to maintaining a healthy mindset after experiencing trauma. Other programs may support women in developing a business based on their passions and hobbies.
Taylor also will ensure that The Bronze Girl Collective offers support in securing a home.
“Getting creative with their housing situation—does that mean living with a relative for a few months? Or participating in a home sharing program or getting on roommates.com? I looked into all of these situations, and I know housing insecurity is the worst stressor to have. One-third of Black women over 65 are living in poverty. I want to change that trend,” Taylor declared.