CHARLESTON – The 2021 Ms. West Virginia America, Cydney Fields, recently presented checks to two West Virginia victim relief agencies to support the work of abuse survivors – the WV Child Advocacy Network and the WV Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Originally from Mingo County, Fields is a social worker who has worked statewide and nationwide, educating others through trainings, policy development and public awareness events on the impact of violence on adults and children. She specializes in resource development for rural communities by understanding the challenges faced by those who live in areas where access to resources is limited.
“As a social worker, I am determined to inspire hope and promote the safety of others. As Ms. West Virginia, I want to take that same passion and use it to raise the voices of those who often go unheard, ”said Fields. “I am grateful to know that with these individual donations to WVCADV and WVCAN, coupled with the work of others like me, adults and children who are victims of violence in West Virginia can live in a safer state.”
Children in West Virginia face several hurdles as most are unvaccinated, with disruptions to their schedules due to quarantines and the stress-related uncertainty of caregivers – in addition to the prevalence of abuse and negligence. According to Darkness to Light, one in 10 children will be sexually assaulted before their 18th birthday.
“West Virginia’s 21 child advocacy centers have continued to work day in and day out to restore the lives of child abuse survivors, despite impending federal budget cuts. Now, more than ever, we need leaders like Ms. West Virginia to stand up for children and protect them from abuse and neglect, ”said Kate Flack, CEO of the WV Child Advocacy Network.
Joyce Yedlosky, Team Coordinator for the WV Coalition Against Domestic Violence, said, “We thank Cydney for choosing Domestic Violence and Child Abuse Awareness as Ms. West Virginia’s platform. This generous donation and the awareness it raises will impact the safety of survivors and help make West Virginia a safer family state. “
This money was collected in the recent state competition as part of the “Fabulous Face Competition” by all of the contestants vying for the title of Mrs. / Miss West Virginia. Half of the proceeds from this contest were distributed among the causes of choice of the winners and the other half went to the Victoria’s Voice Foundation, the national philanthropy of Ms. West Virginia. They provide education and support to people with substance use disorders by promoting naloxone and harm reduction.
Fields and her husband, Sfc. Joshua Fields, live at Scott Depot with their daughter Isabella and son Maddox. Fields received her BA and MA in Social Work from Concord University in Athens, West Virginia, and is a Certified Graduate Social Worker with WVCADV.