Adrian Shanker's 12 Days of Giving Page
In my family, the holidays have always been a time when we think about giving. When I was a kid, my grandmother would give me a check for $10 and I would research charities to decide who to send it to (along with my $10 match, which she required!)
For years, I did LGBT activism as my hobby - I'd spend countless hours in my evenings and weekends working to advance LGBT equity in Pennsylvania. Five years ago, I left my last job to start our LGBT community center, literally a dream realized.
In this season of giving, I'm asking my close friends to consider supporting the continuation of this dream. Much of what the center accomplishes is done through the power of individual donors. In these final days of this decade, we are harnessing this power to set us up for success in 2020.
We need to raise $12,000 from individuals in the final 12 days of 2019. We are calling this our "12 days of giving" and I'm asking you -- one of my close friends -- if you can participate with a donation of $85 or more.
Of course your donation is tax-deductible, but that's not why you should give.
Here are twelve real reasons why you should give.
1. Because Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center took the Trump administration to court to block the Denial of Care rule, AND WE WON -- protecting LGBT consumers of healthcare across the country.
2. Because Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community hosted 53 free arts programs for the Lehigh Valley this year, bringing world-class queer art to the area
3. Because the center responds to continuous and emerging needs through our 13 monthly supportive services for adults, including our free legal clinic and medical marijuana enrollment assistance.
4. Because the center serves more than 350 youth in the Lehigh Valley each year - some of the youth have described the center as their home, and in fact many are homeless or housing insecure. Every LGBT youth deserves a safe space to meet other youth like them, and to receive the services to help them become their own self-advocates.
5. Because the center is a strong voice for LGBT rights and community and has led successful the effort to ban conversion therapy in four cities in the last two years.
6. Because in a city with booming development, it is more important now than ever to have free programs and services for community members, so that cost is not a barrier to participation in community programs.
7. Because the center is a leader in re-training healthcare professionals to provide culturally-appropriate care, and has trained 34 agencies in 2019, including medical staff.
8. Because the center develops innovative programs to address LGBT health disparities -- such as the Hepatitis A outbreak, and is effective at reaching our community (which traditional healthcare agencies call a "hard to reach population.")
9. Because there are still parents that don't support their LGBT kids, there are still employers who discriminate, the world is not equitable yet and we need organizations like this one to stand up and fight.
10. Because the center produces a pride festival grounded in our values -- an accessible pride for people with disabilities, a focus on queer art and culture, and with 1% of all Pride revenue going to an international pride solidarity fund to support pride events in hostile countries, often ones where holding a pride event can land organizers in jail -- or worse.
11. Because Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center is a careful steward of our donors' resources -- we keep our costs low and our impact high.
12. Because we all wish we had an LGBT center like this one when we were younger, and we have the opportunity to make sure these programs continue.
thank you, my friends, for your generous support during these 12 days of giving, and for your friendship and solidarity throughout the year!
P.S. if your employer matches charitable donations, please don't forget to let them know about your gift as well!