The Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan announced grants totaling $125,400 from The Hope Fund to assist agencies and organizations that support the needs of LGBT individuals and communities. Grants were awarded to the following organizations:
-$10,000 for the ACLU Fund of Michigan to educate and advocate on behalf of LGBT seniors in southeast Michigan. Plans include a number of activities in collaboration with other local organizations, including formally creating a Michigan chapter of SAGE (Senior Action in a Gay Environment), a national social science and advocacy organization.
-$8,000 for Eastern Michigan University for theatrical performances about LGBTQ youth as a learning tool for middle and high school teachers and staff. These performances, aimed at creating safer schools for LGBTQ youth, will be provided as part of professional development for school administrators.
-$20,000 for Equality Michigan to develop and launch a new website. The need for a redesigned website stems from the newly merged entity and a desire to improve its outreach to a larger portion of Michigan’s LGBT community.
-$25,000 for the Michigan AIDS Coalition to provide leadership training for LGBTQ youth of color. A grant will help expand the Young Brothers United program, which facilitates meaningful community involvement of youth in the community.
-$2,400 for Nonprofit Enterprises at Work to convene two gatherings of HOPE grantees serving LGBTQ youth of color.
-$10,000 for Ozone House to train other youth-serving organizations to better respond to the needs of LGBT youth. Up to 15 youth social service providers will be trained, utilizing the Implementing Inclusion curriculum developed by Ozone House, which has a strong track record in serving LGBT youth.
-$40,000 for the Ruth Ellis Center to train LGBTQ youth of color to promote positive change in the child welfare system. Because LGBTQ youth are disproportionately represented in the foster care system, the youth will be trained in public speaking and other skills necessary to move forward their ideas for change in that system.
-$10,000 for the Unitarian Universalist Social Justice Network to undertake a collaborative project to develop and distribute an LGBTQ toolkit to 400 faith groups. Information will be included on resource agencies and services within Michigan and information on why faith groups should consider becoming more inclusive of LGBTQ people.
Several of the grants are another in a series of steps that the Community Foundation has taken over the last four years to help strengthen the LGBT people of color communities.
Created in 1994, The HOPE Fund of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan exists to strengthen and empower organizations that serve the LGBT communities by supporting important charitable activities in southeast Michigan and by encouraging individuals to consider what they can do with their personal philanthropy. Since its inception, more than $1.3 million in grants have been made through the Foundation’s HOPE Fund. The HOPE Fund also helps people carry out their charitable wishes to benefit the LGBT communities.