With LGBTQ teens four times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers after facing bullying incidents it great news to hear that The Rockefeller Foundation has awarded a grant of $175,000 to the NYC Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center’s Youth department. The grant will expand The Center’s leadership programming to further focus on career & college readiness & employment outcomes overall in the LGBTQ youth population. By being able to enhance service learning & external internship opportunities for youth participants they will be able to overcome barriers they may face in educational or social settings due to their sexuality & general identity. The Center’s programs hopefully will reinforce LGBTQ youth to initiate & make change in their lives & communities. Glennda Testone, Executive Director at The Center stated, "Grants from organizations like The Rockefeller Foundation are crucial in strengthening our programs so that these youth can thrive. We’re so grateful for funding that supports these young people in all the ways they deserve, so they can reach their full potential." Diany Disla, Center Youth participant added, "I’ve gained so much from Center Youth leadership programming. Before coming to The Center, I was embarrassed of who I was & didn’t think I was smart enough to reach my goals. Now, I’m more aware of my surroundings, better able to communicate with people in my life & have truly found myself along the way. I got the support & encouragement I needed to feel empowered to make changes in my life, & recently returned to school – I’m not giving up on myself! The lessons I’ve learned will stay with me for the rest of my life." The Center has 30 years of experience working specifically with LGBTQ adolescents & young adults & serves 1,200 individual youth annually. Center Youth provides LGBTQ youth, ages 13 to 22, with community support to foster healthy development in a safe, affirming, sex-positive environment. The grant is expected to last through March 2015.
For More Info: gaycenter.org
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