Tallahassee, FL — Pride month is full of fun and insightful activities, and many unsung LGBGTQ+ organizations are on the frontlines everyday supporting the community.
Black Transmen Inc
Black Transmen Inc is a national non-profit organization founded in 2011 by Carter & Esperanza Brown.
It’s dedicated to “empowering African American transgender men by addressing multi-layered issues of injustice faced at the intersections of racial, sexual orientation, and gender identities,” according to its website.
The organization’s motto is “One Is Not Born A Man HE Becomes One.”
The founders aim to ensure “all transgender men and TLGB individuals are acknowledged and provided equal access and protection under the law thereby enabling them to contribute towards a productive society.”
It’s located in Dallas, Texas and has 2,985 people who have joined their campaign “Empower HIM” with more than $16,000 raised in funds. The goal is to reach $65,000.
Black and Pink National
Black and Pink National is a prison abolitionist organization founded by Jason Lydon in 2005.
It’s focused on stopping “the criminal punishment system and liberating LGBTQIA2S+ people and people living with HIV/AIDS who are affected by that system through advocacy, support, and organizing,” according to its website.
The name represents “the black flag of anarchism and the power of queer politics and experience” as it started out as an “anarchist project.”
The organization has 11 volunteer-led chapters with more than 20,000 members — who are current and former incarcerated LGBTQ+ and people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) — across the nation.
New Alternatives is an organization for LGBTQ+ homeless youth founded by Kate Barnhart in 2008.
It’s centered in New York City assisting LGBTQ+ youth and young adults, ages 16–30, who are experiencing homeless.
According to its website, 40% of the LGBTQ+ youth population in New York City is experiencing homelessness. 7% of LGBTQ+ youth experiencing homelessness are more likely to experience “bullying, sexual assault, violence, trauma, HIV infection, mental health disorders, and substance abuse than their heterosexual peers.”
The organization is dedicated to decreasing these statistics by transitioning them out of the shelter system to “stable adult lives.”
“This is the place for young people to bring their problems. None are too big or small. Arrest warrants, finding a long-lost relative, applying for disability benefits, returning to high school or college, back taxes... We help with all of it,” according to its website.
Out & Equal
Out & Equal is an organization centered around LGBTQ+ workplace equality founded by Selisse Berry in 1996. It has partnered with Fortune 1000 companies, government agencies, and organizations across the country.
The goal is to transform organizations where all people are “equal, belong, and thrive.”
“We believe equality is about more than checking off boxes. And we know inclusion requires more than a set of directions. It’s about creating spaces that celebrate and foster growth for every kind of employee, where leadership is made up of different people with diverse perspectives,” according to its website.
SNap Co. (Solutions Not Punishment) is a coalition creating a movement for LGBTQ+ in the Black community in Atlanta, Georgia.
The collaborative builds “safety within our community, investing in our community, investing in our collective embodied leadership, and building political power,” according to its website.
“We envision a vibrant, radically, inclusive metro Atlanta where all our people are safe and free, have the opportunity to live and thrive as their authentic selves,” according to the organization.
Sylvia Rivera Law Project
The Sylvia Rivera Law Project is an organization focused on ensuring all people are “free to self-determine their gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination, or violence,” according to the organization.
It’s based in New York City and was founded in 2002 by Dean Spade, an Open Society Institute and Berkeley Law Foundation Fellow.
The organization is named after the civil rights pioneer Sylvia Rivera who pushed hard against the exclusion of transgender people from the Sexual Orientation Non-Discrimination Act in New York.
Trans Justice Funding Project
Trans Justice Funding Project is a community-led organization focused on the leadership of “ trans people organizing around their experiences with racism, economic injustice, transmisogyny, ableism, immigration, incarceration, and other intersecting oppressions,” according to its website.
It was founded in 2012 by Gabriel Foster provides grants and fellowships to the trans and non-binary community. According to its website, the organization has so far distributed more than $5.6 million.
“We wanted to turn the traditional power dynamic of philanthropy on its head and have trans and non-binary activists and organizers decide where funding should go,” Foster told Tides.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is an nationwide organization that has been around for nearly 100 years fighting against several injustices and discrepancies in America.
The organization founded by Roger Baldwin in 1920 has now more than four million members, activists and supporters according to its website.
“So long as we have enough people in this country willing to fight for their rights, we’ll be called a democracy,” said Baldwin according to the website.
The Ali Forney Center
The Ali Forney Center is all about transforming lives.
The organization supports and protects homeless Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning youths from “the harms of homelessness and empower them with the tools needed to be independent.”
It was founded by Carl Siciliano in 2002 and is named after Ali Forney, a gender-nonconforming youth forced to live on the streets at the age of 13.
“We provide more than just housing – we provide a home with stability, support, and comprehensive services to help LGBTQ+ homeless youths get their lives back on track and to prepare them to live independently and thrive,” according to the website.
The Audre Lorde Project
The Audre Lorde Project (ALP) is a community organization focused in the New York City area for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Two Spirit, Trans and Gender Non-Conforming People of Color.
The organization was founded in 1994 by Advocates for Gay Men of Color and named after Audre Lorde who was an American poet known for her passionate writings on injustices of racism, sexism, classism, and homophobia.
“Through mobilization, education and capacity-building, we work for community wellness and progressive social and economic justice,” according to its website. “Committed to struggling across differences, we seek to responsibly reflect, represent and serve our various communities.”
Trans Housing Coalition Fund
Trans Housing Coalition Fund is a nonprofit organization based in Georgia founded by Jesse Pratt López in 2019.
It’s focused on helping transgender and gender non-conforming people who are experiencing homeless in Atlanta off the streets into stable housing.
The LGBTQ Freedom Fund
The LGBTQ Freedom Fund is an organization helping pay off bails to “secure the safety and liberty of individuals in jail and immigration detention.”
It was founded by Scott Greenberg and has posted bonds for people in more than 20 states in America.
“We work as an advocacy, education, grantmaking and policy outfit to mobilize the public and policymakers to address the disproportionate impact of incarceration on LGBTQ individuals,” according to the website. “This disparity is precipitated by poverty and discrimination in school, employment, policing, family and society at large.”
The Marsha P. Johnson Institute
The Marsha P. Johnson Institute was created by Elle Moxley and named after activist, self-identified drag queen and performer Marsha P. Johnson.
“I founded the Marsha P. Johnson Institute (MPJI) in direct response to the nationwide—and vastly underreported—epidemic of murders of BLACK trans women,” wrote the founder in a letter. The violent and preventable nature of these deaths directly connects to the exclusion of BLACK trans people from social justice issues; namely racial, gender, and reproductive justice, as well as gun violence reform.”
The institute defends and protects the human rights of Black transgender people.
“We intend to reclaim our relationship as BLACK trans people to our movement legacy. It is in our reclaiming of this that we give ourselves permission to reclaim autonomy to our minds, to our bodies, and to our futures,” according to its website.
The Trevor Project
The Trevor Project is a nonprofit suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for the LGBTQ+ community. It is the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis organization.
It was founded by writer James Lecesne, director/producer Peggy Rajski and producer Randy Stone. These three individuals created the Academy award winning short film “Trevor,” a film about a 13-year-old boy who was rejected by his friends due to his sexuality.
The Zebra Coalition
The Zebra Coalition is a network of organizations that assists the LGTBQ+ community and its youth who are experiencing homelessness, bullying, isolation from their families, and physical, sexual and drug abuse.
The collective implements “individualized programs to guide them to recovery and stability.” So far, more than 400 youth have been sheltered through their program.
“Zebra has helped me be myself by surrounding me with like-minded peers who understand the struggle of being ostracized by the world,” said one of their members, Nicole, according to their website.