How We Celebrated National Hispanic Heritage Month

During National Hispanic Heritage Month, The Trevor Project received essays from Latinx writers about the icons that inspire them. Read their stories, in their own words:

“I was confused until Frida found me. I had a white dad and a Mexican mom, which made me feel like I didn’t belong anywhere. Add to that I was a young queer who was more interested in art than sports. Then I started reading about this incredible queer woman whose dad was from Europe and whose mother was Mestiza, like me. I became obsessed with her deeply expressive self-portraits, the way she used vulnerability as strength. It was once said that Frida’s art is ‘a ribbon wrapped around a bomb.’ Frida reminds me that there is strength in being strange—there is power in the queer, in the Mestiza, in decorating your wounds and making them your own. Throughout her difficult life, she continued to paint, and create, and to unearth wonders in herself, embedded in a person whose politics, queerness, gender, and ethnicity made her ‘other’ in the western world. Thinking of her gives me strength, and in my lowest points, I read her quote: ‘I used to think I was the strangest person in the world, but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do. I would imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me too. Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it’s true I’m here, and I’m just as strange as you.’ I think we as queer people and brown people can be that too. I’m here as well.”

John Paul Brammer is a writer, speaker, and activist based in New York City. His work has been published in The Guardian, Slate, BuzzFeed, NBC, and many other outlets. His work blends the deeply personal with the political.

 

“Sylvia Rivera refused to be silent. I remember the first time I heard Sylvia Rivera’s speech at the 1973 pride march in NYC. ‘Y’all better quiet down!’ I watched her tell a crowd of predominantly white gay and lesbian onlookers who booed her as she attempted to address them. Sylvia had been trying to get on stage all day to make her message heard only to have organizers attempt to silence her. But Sylvia would not be silent. She took the mic and reminded them of the LGBT people beaten and incarcerated by the police, reminded them of those homeless and hungry on the streets.

That was Sylvia. This Venezuelan, Puerto Rican trans woman would always speak truth to power even when facing adversity within her own community. Perhaps even especially so. She had the strength of someone who survived more in her lifetime than she should ever have had to. And yet, Sylvia gave what little she had to others who had even less. She co-founded STAR, with Marsha ‘Pay It No Mind’ Johnson, a group for transgender women. STAR housed trans women and provided them with food and clothing. It was community of those on the margins drawing themselves into each other.

Her advocacy came out of necessity, first for herself and then for others. There are times that I recenter myself, and my work as an activist, by coming back to Sylvia. It’s then that I hear Sylvia’s screams from the stage to which she fought to be heard: ‘Revolution now!’”

Eliel Cruz is an activist, speaker and writer on religion, LGBT issues, and culture. A leading bisexual activist, Cruz has spoken across the country on the issues pertaining to the bisexual community, media representation, as well as faith and sexuality at universities and conferences alike. His work has been published in Huffington Post, Upworthy, NBC, Mic News, Teen Vogue, and Rolling Stone, The New York Times and many other outlets.

 

“I’ve never felt like all of me could fit into one singular box. As a mixed-race Latinx bisexual femme, the only thing the identities I hold have in common with each other is that I’m constantly straddling borders. In a traditional Latinx household, I am not supposed to recognize my Blackness, own my queerness, or have a ‘frivolous’ career as writer. I am all three and proud. Gloria Anzaldúa is in many ways a patron saint for all of us Latinx folks who live in the middle. We’re not supposed to exist in our Latinx spaces where we’re socialized into complacency with machismo, homophobia and colonialism. Instead, with her work she calls upon us to shape shift, to live authentically and engage with our community in these topics in order to positively influence the minds of our loved ones and in turn, the culture. She tells us, ‘Voyager, there are no bridges, one builds them as one walks.’ The only way I’ve ever known how to move through the world is with my authenticity—explaining who I am and recounting my experiences to others in my communities in hopes that I can debunk the biases they have learned. This, in my opinion, is the only way that our communities will begin to heal. Thank you Gloria, for paving the way for all of us sinverguenzas to live without borders.”

Barbara Alyssa Gonzalez is a native Nuyorican queer femme writer person on the Internet. Currently, she’s an Associate Culture at CASSIUS but has also contributed for Forbes, Cosmopolitan, Latina Magazine, and more.

 

“When I was little both my abuelas liked to say I’d grow up to be president. I never took the suggestion literally but it started to make me uncomfortable after a while. I grew up in a predominantly white community during the era of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, where staying in the closet and oozing ‘American wholesomeness’ seemed like the state-sanctioned method for success. Being queer and Latinx made me feel like our political system wasn’t made for people like me.

To be frank, it isn’t—but people like Raffi Freedman-Gurspan are helping change that. A Jewish Latina born in Honduras, she made history in 2015 as the first trans woman to work as a white house staffer. When elevated to the role of LGBTQ community liaison, Freedman-Gurspan shaped policy that centered underrepresented communities and and worked closely with the president to provide her input on issues facing the country. While POC and LGBTQ individuals still face an uphill battle toward equal standing under the law, thanks to work of people like Raffi we’re reminded of what’s possible when we demand better.

In a year where the president can’t muster the energy to declare June Pride Month, it’s worth remembering what people like Raffi make possible—what she means for little cis queers like me and little trans Latinas like her all over the country. Her achievements can’t be unwritten, they won’t be forgotten, and her impact doesn’t disappear simply because her employer exited the White House. From her position at National Center for Transgender equality, Freedman-Gurspan is still working to make sure there’s space for LGBTQ communities to be heard when some would have us scared silent. She’s a reminder to think big and dream bigger, because there’s nothing that isn’t within your grasp.”

Gabe Gonzalez is a comedian, writer, and producer living in Brooklyn, NY. He’s a queer Latinx whose work focuses on politics, sexual health and social justice. He’s currently writing for print and video, with work featured on Remezcla, MTV, and NBC Out. He studied improv and sketch comedy at Second City in 2011 and graduated from Brown University in 2012 with a degree in media studies and film production.

 

“When police burst through the doors of our gay bars and arrested LGBTQ people in the 1960s, one Latinx drag queen and WWII veteran sewed unity within the San Francisco queer community. Back when U.S. states had laws against sodomy, this same activist organized his brothers and sisters across the country and internationally to become a unified political force.

Before there was Harvey Milk, there was José Julio Sarria, the Empress of San Francisco.

After the war, Julio Sarria ran for the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1961, and was the first out and proud gay man to run for public office. Let that sink in. A Latinx veteran and drag queen ran for office, lost the election, then set the stage for his friend’s victory for the same seat in 1977. That’s the kind of selfless action that pulls the LGBTQ community together.

While performing as ‘The Nightingale of Montgomery Street,’ Juilio Sarria’s efforts to make LGBTQ people more politically active changed San Francisco. His efforts forced candidates for public office to address the LGBTQ community as a legitimate voter bloc. He took his platform and formed Imperial Courts throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico, essentially creating spaces for LGBTQ people to come together, get political and help one another.

Julio Sarria put his life on the line to fight Nazis. He endangered himself again by living openly while running for public office in the 60s. Julio Sarria is not only a creative and political hero for Latinxs aspiring to change the country, but he is also a pioneer for the movement like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera.

Our wins in the political sphere began with Julio Sarria, and we should never squander the platform he helped build for us.”

Brian Latimer is a Puerto Rican, Catalan and French reporter at MSNBC and NBCNews. They spend their time cutting video, writing for NBCLatino and working to augment Latinx representation on screen and in the newsroom.


Trevor Opposes ACL’s Efforts to Remove Transgender Older Adults from the National Survey

RE: Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Revision of a Currently Approved Collection (ICR Rev); National Survey of Older Americans Act Participants (NSOAAP)

Attn: OMB Desk Officer for ACL

The Trevor Project is writing to oppose the Administration for Community Living’s (ACL) continued efforts to remove transgender older adults from the National Survey of Older Americans Act Participants (NSOAAP). In the wake of overwhelming public opposition to ACL’s March 13, 2017 proposal to entirely erase lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) older adults from the NSOAAP, we commend ACL on its decision to keep the sexual orientation question on the survey. With no rationale or justification, however, ACL continues to propose eliminating the question on gender identity from the survey. The needs and experiences of all transgender individuals, from young people to our elders must be counted. We write to strongly advocate for ACL to add back in the question on gender identity to this survey.

The more we know, the more we can do to make sure that transgender older adults receive the services they deserve. The NSOAAP survey provides critical data on whether federally funded aging programs like meals on wheels, family caregiver support, adult daycare, and senior centers reach all older adults, including transgender older adults. While ACL’s notice in the Federal Register provides no articulation of, information about, or explanation of ACL’s effort to erase transgender older adults from the NSOAAP, what we do know is that ACL will no longer have data on how the aging network is meeting the needs of this population.

The Trevor Project is the leading national nonprofit organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning/queer (LGBTQ) people. We work to save LGBTQ lives through our accredited free and confidential lifeline; our secure instant messaging services which provide live help and intervention; our social networking community for LGBTQ youth; and our in-school workshops, educational materials, online resources, and advocacy. A San Francisco study has shown that 15% of the LGBTQ elders surveyed had seriously considered suicide within the last year. The study also found that LGBTQ elders had poor physical and mental health.[1] Including gender identity would provide pivotal data that would help guide policies to best serve LGBTQ mental health. The Trevor Project is committed to providing the best crisis intervention services to all LGBTQ people who call us and to meet that goal data collection on the transgender population in federal surveys must continue.

Data, research, and the experience of our colleague organization SAGE (Advocacy and Services for LGBT Elders), its affiliates, and its partners across the country confirm that transgender older adults face a number of barriers to successful aging. While data on transgender older adults is limited, which further makes the case for ACL to continue collecting this information, the data that does exist shows that transgender older adults face higher rates of social isolation and have thinner support networks than their non-transgender peers. The existing research also shows that transgender elders age without a network of welcoming or culturally competent aging, health, and social service providers.

According to Understanding Issues Facing LGBT Older Adults, 25% of transgender older adults report having faced discrimination based on their gender identity, transgender older adults face much higher rates of psychological distress than their non-transgender peers, and nearly 50% live at 200% of the federal poverty line or lower.[2] These challenges are compounded by concerns related to caregiving and by limited access to healthcare. Almost one third of transgender people don’t know who will care for them and approximately two thirds fear their access to healthcare will be limited as they get older.[3] As a result, more than half fear they might be denied medical care as they age.[4] Many transgender elders fear health professionals discovering their transgender status—particularly those whose presentation does not conform with their anatomy.[5] These concerns are often reflected in long-term care settings. In a survey on LGBT older adults living in long-term care facilities, more than 10% of respondents said that they, a client, or loved-one had witnessed staff refusing to call transgender residents by their preferred name or pronoun.[6]

A 2001 U.S. Administration on Aging study found that LGBT older adults are 20% less likely than other older adults to have access to government services such as housing assistance, meal programs, food stamps, and senior centers.[7] In other words, despite their greater need for service providers due to their truncated support networks, transgender older adults lack access to culturally competent care and services. Nonetheless, most State Units on Aging are making no systematic efforts to assess and address the needs of this population.[8] The very age of the 16 year-old ACL study we cite further demonstrates the necessity for ACL to collect updated data on whether the aging network is meeting the needs of this population.

Rather than abandoning the efforts that have been made during the last three years, ACL can increase the quality and utility of the data it collects about transgender older adults by learning from the experience of other federal and state agencies that have successfully implemented procedures to collect gender identity information. To that end, we believe the 2014-2016 NSOAAP’s gender identity question (found under DE1a1. “What do you mean by something else?”) can and should be made significantly shorter and, at the same time, more effective. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (“BRFSS”), which is the largest ongoing health survey system in the world, and its state partners, provide a number of examples of how ACL can successfully identify transgender individuals.[9] The Gender Identity in U.S. Surveillance (GenIUSS) Group provides another, particularly effective, and well-vetted two-step approach to collecting information about gender identity.[10] In short, we encourage ACL to update its approach, rather than abandoning this question, and adopt one of these more effective and efficient means of counting transgender elders.

ACL must continue collecting data on whether the aging network is reaching transgender older adults in order to ensure maximum inclusion of transgender older adults in programs funded under the Older Americans Act (OAA). From State Units on Aging to Area Agencies on Aging, the aging network has asked ACL for more and better data on transgender older adults in the communities it serves.[11] We need more of this data on the experiences and needs of transgender elders in our country—not less of it.

We therefore urge ACL to retain both sexual orientation and gender identity questions in the NSOAAP. Asking a demographic question about gender identity will increase the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected. We further believe that by continuing to collect this data, and learning more about this population, ACL and the aging network will help more members of our older transgender community to live independently, minimize the burden on the aging network, and ultimately save taxpayer resources by reaching those who are most vulnerable.

Sincerely,

Amit Paley

CEO & Executive Director


[1] Adelman, M., Alcedo, M et al. (2014).LGBT Aging at the Golden Gate: San Francisco Policy Issues & Recommendations(pp. 42-43) (United States, City and County of San Francisco, Human Rights Commission). San Francisco, CA: City and County of San Francisco.

[2] Understanding Issues Facing LGBT Older Adults. 2017. The Movement Advancement Project and SAGE. http://www.lgbtmap.org/file/understanding-issues-facing-lgbt-older-adults.pdf

[3] Understanding Issues Facing LGBT Older Adults. 2017. The Movement Advancement Project and SAGE. http://www.lgbtmap.org/file/understanding-issues-facing-lgbt-older-adults.pdf

[4] Understanding Issues Facing LGBT Older Adults. 2017. The Movement Advancement Project and SAGE. http://www.lgbtmap.org/file/understanding-issues-facing-lgbt-older-adults.pdf

[5] Improving the Lives of Transgender Older Adults, Recommendations for Policy and Practice. 2012. SAGE and NCTE. http://www.sageusa.org/resources/publications.cfm?ID=13

[6] Improving the Lives of Transgender Older Adults, Recommendations for Policy and Practice. 2012. SAGE and NCTE. Available at http://www.sageusa.org/resources/publications.cfm?ID=13

[7] Improving the Lives of LGBT Older Adults. 2010. LGBT Movement Advancement Project & Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Elders (MAP & SAGE). Available at http://www.lgbtmap.org/file/improving-the-lives-of-lgbt-older-adults.pdf

[8] A SAGE report found that: State Plans filed by 29 States make no reference whatsoever to LGBT older adults; an additional 12 State Plans have isolated references to LGBT older adults, but do not address specific actions being taken to reach and target this population; and only nine States, and the District of Columbia, specifically address efforts to reach out and target LGBT older adults.

[9] The 2013 Massachusetts SOGI module for the BRFSS includes the following question: Some people describe themselves as transgender when they experience a different gender identity from their sex at birth. For example, a person born into a male body, but who feels female or lives as a woman. Do you consider yourself to be transgender? Yes, transgender, male to female; Yes, transgender, female to male; Yes, transgender, gender non-conforming; or No. See Williams Inst., Best Practices for Asking Questions to Identify Transgender and Other Gender Minorities on Population-based Surveys. Available at http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/geniuss-report-sep-2014.pdf

[10] Survey administrators ask people their sex assigned at birth followed by their current gender identity. See Williams Inst., Best Practices for Asking Questions to Identify Transgender and Other Gender Minorities on Population-based Surveys. Available at http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/geniuss-report-sep-2014.pdf

[11] Choi SK, Meyer IH: LGBT Aging: A Review of Research Findings, Needs, and Policy Implications. 2016. Los Angeles, CA: The Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law. Available at http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/LGBT-Aging-A-Review.pdf


Give Out Day is April 20th!

The Trevor Project is celebrating Give OUT Day on April 20th, a 24-hour fundraising event that unites the LGBTQ community across America to raise money in support of the LGBTQ community. Since its inception in 2013, over 23,000 individual donors have contributed more than $3 million and supported more than 500 different organizations in every part of the country. LGBTQ nonprofits across the country, ranging from the arts to social services agencies, from advocacy groups to sports leagues, from community centers to health care nonprofits, have all benefitted.

For The Trevor Project, this year’s Give OUT Day holds extra special meaning.  Only months ago, the volume of youth reaching out to our crisis services surged to its highest level in Trevor’s history. In this time of crisis for our youth, thousands of donors quickly chipped in to help us fully staff our phone, chat, and text crisis lines. Even in these difficult times, these acts of kindness remind us that our young people can count on a diverse support network of LGBTQ friends and allies in 2017.

Our community has the power to save lives. Give OUT Day reminds us that even though we all have different levels of charitable capacity and motivations for giving, every member of our community can make that powerful lifesaving impact. Consider making a one-time gift or a monthly pledge of any amount on Give OUT Day to show our young people that they are never alone.


The Trevor Project Competes to Win the Brackets For Good Championship!

The Trevor Project is honored to be selected by AT&T to participate in an online competition called “Brackets for Good” which works very similarly to how NCAA basketball teams advance through the March Madness tournament.  With all the stress that the world is serving us right now, The Trevor Project sees this as an excellent way to put our energy into creating positive change by supporting LGBTQ+ youth.

The way the Trevor Project wins Brackets for Good is by advancing through the brackets based on donations.  Every dollar donated equals a point for Trevor.  You can help Trevor advance by putting your points on the board! Every dollar you donate moves us closer to our goal. Get in the game and help us win!

The first round of the tournament has already ended and we’ve made it to the next bracket!  With your help we can advance to the next round and even go as far as winning the championship and a $100,000 grant from AT&T. A grant of this size would help us provide additional days each week of TrevorText and TrevorChat, our free, confidential and secure service in which LGBTQ young people can text or chat with a highly-trained Trevor counselor for support and crisis intervention.

Share this with other sports fans who understand the power of giving, or with anyone who believes that LGBTQ young people deserve help when and how they need it and to know that they are not alone. You can also share this competition via your social media:

Want to support LGBTQ+ youth? Donate to our @BracketsForGood campaign to help @TrevorProject  win the championship!


Happy Thanksgiving! A Message of Gratitude in Uncertain Times

Dear Friends,

In these uncertain times, let me take a moment to express my sincere thanks for all of your support.   Every moment of every day, The Trevor Project hears from young people who question their futures.  And because of you – our supporters – we are here.   We know despite the messages they may be hearing in the news, or on social media – or at school, or home – that at Trevor there are people who care about them and that they are beautiful – just the way they are.

As the Executive Director and CEO of this unique organization, I have seen first-hand the power of our work.  In our soon-to-be released study with USC and the Children’s Hospital of L.A., feedback from LGBTQ youth reassures me that indeed we are making a difference and saving lives.  One anonymous youth told us, “The counselor helped me realize that my life still meant something to people and that I do matter.” Another noted how important it was to have a safer space, saying, “I was able to be fully open with the counselor without worrying about being judged or punished, the way I might be if I shared those things with my parents, friends, or peers at school.”

So, no matter what happens in the world, or what you hear in your communities — you can rest assured that as a friend and supporter of The Trevor Project, you are doing your part to make a difference in the lives of the LGBTQ youth of this country.

Thank you for everything you do for us – you make it possible for Trevor to be there for the youth who need us.  Now, more than ever before!

With sincere gratitude,

Abbe Land
Executive Director and CEO
The Trevor Project


On #GivingTuesday, Show LGBTQ Youth We’re Here for Them

 

Last week we entered a new chapter in our history. The surprising election results have created so much uncertainty. After so many years of progress, LGBTQ people are wondering what’s to come. We are all concerned for the future of our young people.

In the days following the election, calls, chats, and texts from young people have reached the highest levels we’ve seen in Trevor’s history. They are calling us to tell us that they are frightened because:

  • They are worried that they will lose their rights
  • They are afraid to come out for fear of being rejected
  • They are terrified that conversion therapy will become acceptable (again)

The timing of this is also challenging, as the upcoming holidays can be difficult for LGBTQ youth who often feel all alone. In fact, winter is the busiest time of year for our emergency response volunteers. Last winter, we spent 402,300 minutes talking with young people who reached out to us for help. And this season, we’re taking steps to be as prepared as possible when the phone rings.

You can help. We’re participating in Giving Tuesday on November 29th, the global day dedicated to giving back. Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season and is fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. By this date, we’re hoping to raise $25,000 to cover 25,000 more minutes of support to manage the spike in calls, texts and chats that we expect to increase during this winter. $1 helps keep our lines going for 1 more minute. With your help this season, we can fully ensure that LGBTQ youth know they are never alone.

Our youth deserve every minute…

Our counselors spend nearly 5,000 total minutes a day on our crisis lines responding to youth in emergencies during the holiday season. There are many ways to get involved in #GivingTuesday:

  • Make a gift to this campaign
  • $30 lets us talk to one youth for 30 minutes
  • $60 keeps our lines going for nearly an hour
  • $120 will cover one TrevorChat or TrevorText cris counselor’s shift

If you think you can raise $250 or more between now and November 29th, help us by becoming a fundraiser on our Giving Tuesday page.

Can you spare a couple minutes? Engage your community every Tuesday with stories about why you support The Trevor Project. Every Tuesday leading up to Giving Tuesday, we’ll be using Twitter and the hashtag #TrevorTuesday to feature donors like you who are building a brighter future for LGBTQ youth.

This Giving Tuesday help us raise $25,000. We at The Trevor Project believe in our youth.  We fight every day to save the lives of young LGBTQ people. And we will continue to lead the way for a brighter future for our youth, no matter what! Our phones are ringing off the hooks and with your support, we will continue to answer them 24/7 and save the lives of our precious young people.


We’re Partnering With The Mighty!

We’re thrilled to announce a new partnership that will bring Trevor Project’s resources in front of The Mighty‘s wide-reaching readership. We will now have a growing home page on The Mighty and appear on many stories on the site, allowing us to get many more people involved with our organization.

The Mighty is a story-based health community focused on improving the lives of people facing disease, disorder, mental illness and disability. More than half of Americans are facing serious health conditions or medical issues. They want more than information. They want to be inspired. The Mighty publishes real stories about real people facing real challenges.

We’re dedicated to providing comprehensive and support for LGBT people with mental illness in their lives. With this partnership, we’ll be able to help even more people.

We encourage you to submit a story to The Mighty and make your voice heard.


Miley Cyrus and Phantogram Show Their Support for LGBTQ Youth!

During the month of September, The Happy Hippie Foundation, Miley Cyrus, and Phantogram helped us raise awareness for Suicide Prevention Month on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.  We are so grateful for their support of LGBTQ+ youth, and using their platforms to spread compassion and understanding.  In addition to spreading the word about our suicide prevention resources and self-care guide, Miley Cyrus spoke publicly about suicide prevention on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon.  For the rest of October, Miley Cyrus is on our Times Square billboard to help us #PictureABrighterFuture for LGBTQ+ youth!


Do you want to be featured on our billboard too?  It’s easy: submit a selfie through the Donate-A-Photo app, and you could be selected to be our new billboard star in the heart of New York City!  You can submit for a chance to be featured from now until December.  For every photo you share, Johnson & Johnson will donate directly to support LGBTQ+ youth, and for every 15 photos submitted, you will help one youth in crisis receive the support they need.  Read more here to learn how you can share a selfie to support Trevor!


National Suicide Prevention Month


The Trevor Project’s electronic billboard on 43rd Street and Broadway in the heart of Times Square

You too can save young lives, which is the message of The Trevor Project’s Suicide Prevention Month campaign this September. Using various forms of digital media throughout the campaign, we launched a billboard in Times Square as well as a Public Service Ad campaign featuring actor Kira Kosarin, daughter of Trevor volunteer Lauren Kosarin, directed by Danny Kosarin (Kira’s father).

Sharing her family’s story in The Advocate, Lauren Kosarin explained the importance of this campaign: “We are still living during a time when many LGBTQ people cannot always live their authentic lives safely. LGBTQ youth know this, which can lead to devastating consequences. Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people ages 10 to 24. The rate of suicide attempts is four times greater for LGB youth and two times greater for that of questioning youth than that of straight youth. Nearly half of transgender people have seriously thought about taking their lives and one quarter have reported making a suicide attempt…We all play a part in the fight to save young lives. You too can save a life, no matter how involved you get with The Trevor Project.”

To inspire people to connect, communicate, and care about suicide prevention, we joined the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, Take 5 to Save Lives, and SAMHSA for their #BeThe1To campaign and worked with transgender rapper Kaycee Ortiz of Futurehood to reach out to LGBTQ people of color. To engage people on social media, Trevor created guides on how to practice self-care, talk about suicide prevention, and educate schools about our suicide prevention training program, Lifeguard.

Trevor’s Executive Director & CEO, Abbe Land shared how to take action in Gay Star News: “Many times, people who are feeling suicidal feel powerless. They may want to reach out for help, but shame may prevent them from doing so. Sometimes, the ones they love may not know how to offer help. Trevor’s campaign empowers both those in crisis and those wanting to help to start connecting and forming more supportive environments for all.”

Trevor’s shareable guides and posters will allow everyone to take part in raising awareness about suicide prevention, either digitally or in the classroom. With Trevor’s Self-Care Guide, people in crisis can see how to take care of themselves at home, school, or in public. With Trevor’s Suicide Prevention Guide, people who are unsure about how to offer help or people who don’t know how to ask for help can find ways to connect, communicate, and get care. And, with Trevor’s Back to School Guide, Trevor offers ways for schools, classmates, teachers, and youth-serving professionals to offer support and a more welcoming environment to LGBTQ youth in crisis.

To show LGBTQ youth that their lives matter, share Trevor’s PSA or any of their suicide prevention guides at: thetrevorproject.org/SaveLGBTQLives. Communicating and connecting about suicide can be the first step towards empowering LGBTQ youth to get the care they need.

 


Donor Appreciation Month

Whether you’re a one-time, monthly, or yearly donor of The Trevor Project, we want to thank you during Donor Appreciation Month for making it possible for our staff and volunteers to be there 24/7 for LGBTQ youth in crisis.

Throughout the year, we’ve seen donors from across the nation come together through holding their own fundraisers, giving on Give OUT Day, Giving Tuesday, TrevorLIVE, and our Impact Hours, raising over $2 million dollars towards our suicide prevention and crisis intervention services. In the wake of Orlando, your donations allowed us to answer the 70% increase in calls, chats, and texts that we received.  Thanks to you, we’ve also been able to add one more day of TrevorText services, and we’ll be launching an improved version of TrevorSpace.org in November.

Recently, a donor who had used our services just a year ago left a comment on one of our donation pages: “The Trevor Project has saved my life…Today, I’m giving back to save as many lives as possible.” They closed their message by including their pronoun, “they.” It’s moments like these when we directly see our impact. Much like many of our major donors, they are now living their life authentically, and can now give back so that others can do the same.

Dane is an example of a Trevor donor who did not grow up with parental support, much like many of the callers we hear from. It was the disparaging disapproval from his mother that inspired him to become an advocate for LGBTQ youth through The Ed Cauduro Fund, which Dane advises at The Oregon Community Foundation. Now, Dane helps ensure that The Trevor Project receives an annual gift that provides crisis support for up to 1,000 LGBTQ youth.

As parents of an LGBTQ young person, donors Raul and Luis see the direct impact digital services can have on youth, which is why they’ve helped secure a generous grant through the Baxter International Foundation with goals of expanding TrevorChat and TrevorText.

Having seen friends in the military still too scared to live their lives authentically, donor, attorney, and former U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, Sue, is devoted to bringing Trevor’s crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to schools across the U.S. so that youth know that they can be accepted for who they are.

Like Dane, Raul, Luis, Sue, and the donor who let us know we helped save their life, all of our donors have personal stories that have helped us pave the way for a brighter future for LGBTQ youth. You too can join in on our fight to save young lives, whether it’s through our crisis services programs, education, or advocacy departments. Share your story with us by increasing your gift today.