To the editor:

I’m writing this letter with both gratitude and concern in my heart. Fourteen years ago, my husband and I, along with my daughter, moved to the Auburn area. We were excited and looking forward to our new home.

However, there was always this concern in my mind for my daughter and her journey in this area. She’s biracial, her father is a State Trooper in Ohio. My concern was in her ability to be accepted, and feel safe in this majority white community.

Along the way, we transferred from DeKalb Eastern to DeKalb Central, for the bigger school environment. Growing up here she never felt like an outsider or experienced many instances of aggression, until high school. In the past three years she has had instances that made her feel unsafe, insecure, intimidated, and honestly just sad. She’s been on the receiving end of many micro aggressions, comments, and others trying to physically poke her, and touch her hair. She hears racial slurs on a regular basis.

She is strong, she is resilient, she is kind, and compassionate. She has friends, but when she made the comment that she would not want to live here after college, I started to evaluate that comment. And through the support of local woman in DeKalb County grew this amazing community organization.

Better Together Auburn, in collaboration with the First Friday’s events, are joining together to bring opportunity and growth of inclusivity and understanding to our community.The new community food pantries are a way to combat food insecurities in our community, and create a way for people to share and give to one another.

I’m so happy to see an organization come together to make Auburn a place of love, and togetherness. The only way to combat hate is with love, and that is the mission of this group.

Better Together Auburn is seeking ways to help foster a community of togetherness all year long, not just on one day, but throughout the year. I hope people in DeKalb County will come out to the events happening this Friday, and all The First Fridays throughout the year and help our community grow in acceptance, in love, in education, and be a more inclusive and warm place to live. We are better together.

Nikki Prichard

Auburn

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