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.


Workplace Giving Spotlight: Kettle

Originally from France, Olivier Peyre always felt lucky to be a part of the LGBTQ community, but media in the country wasn’t as open about discussing LGBTQ issues. As the Co-Founder and Creative Director of American digital media agency Kettle, Olivier is passionate about bringing together people from very diverse backgrounds and creating an open, collaborative and supportive workplace that hires many minorities to fill top positions. Now, he is making a difference in the lives of LGBTQ youth in crisis by enrolling his Kettle teammates in a workplace giving program through Trevor. “Our team’s donations actually translate directly into saving lives,” he says.

Being involved with Trevor has directly enhanced employee engagement and has built rapport amongst Olivier’s team. “We use an app called Slack to communicate across teams and offices. When we shared our decision to partner with The Trevor Project and to match their donations, we were overwhelmed by the amount of positive feedback we received right away, and donations started coming minutes after the announcement. Even news about our summer outing, or holiday party announcement doesn’t get that much love. I believe this gave us a chance to discuss topics that we may not have opened up about before in our workplace,” Olivier says.

Workplace giving not only inspires the culture of companies like Kettle, but also has a direct impact on The Trevor Project and the young people we’re able to serve. If your company has a matching gifts program, it’s an easy way to double your donation and impact. This year, the matching gifts we’ve received have helped us raise almost $420,000. Our corporate partners have matched over 2,200 gifts this fiscal year alone.

Trevor’s goal is to raise $750,000 from workplace giving programs. If we meet our goal, we’ll be able to serve many more young people in our community who are thinking about suicide. Assess your eligibility and get detailed corporate giving information about your employer by talking to your Human Resources department. If your company may be interested in making your gift go even further, please contact [email protected]

 


Trevor Outreach Across The Nation

Lost-n-Found Youth executive director Rick Westbrook (l) and actor and activist Josh Hutcherson (r). (Photo by Patrick Saunders)

The Trevor Project has been connecting with champions of LGBTQ youth across the nation as we raise awareness about our suicide prevention and crisis intervention work. In July, through our PowerON initiative, we co-hosted an event with Lost-N-Found Youth, an organization that works to end homelessness for LGBTQ youth in Atlanta. With nearly 40 percent of homeless youth who identify as LGBTQ and an estimated 650,000 homeless LGBT youth nationally, it is crucial that we show we are there for them, especially when they may struggle getting connected to resources.

Trevor’s Youth Advisory Councilmember Tom Woermer, LGBT Tech, human IT, and Straight But Not Narrow came together to help raise $3,000 dollars for PowerON so that we could provide refurbished computers and cell phones to youth and connect them to Trevor’s lifesaving services. 10 laptops and 28 solar chargers were donated at our event, with Josh Hutcherson in attendance, along with 200 folks, including Rep. Park Cannon – 58th District GA, four Atlanta City Council Members, and two Atlanta City School Board Members. According to ThinkProgress.org, “Having a phone can be the difference between sleeping in a public space, risking physical harm, and calling a trusted friend, family member, or case worker who can give you a place to stay…and 62 percent of homeless youth own a cellphone but only 40 percent have a working phone..” Learn more about why being connected to tech is crucial for the mental health and well-being of homeless LGBTQ youth in the video below.

The Trevor Project has also been lucky to connect with Miss Missouri, Erin O’ Flaherty, the first openly gay Miss America contestant, as she raises awareness about our suicide prevention efforts among the LGBTQ community in the South and beyond. Miss Missouri marched with us and YouTube star Brendan Jordan for our San Diego Pride event. It was so meaningful to the LGBTQ community there, and we thank Trevor Ambassador Joshua Coyne for organizing such an empowering event. We look forward to working with them in the future. You can check out some of our Tweets here and our first Facebook LIVE video, which got over 10K views.

You can join our fight to save young lives at our upcoming events in Miami August 28, Chicago September 16, and San Diego September 24 with Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants. Thank you for being a warrior for LGBTQ youth. Showing them that they matter can help us save lives.


Why LGBTQ Youth Need Your Support This Summer

During the summer, many of Trevor’s youth can find themselves stuck at home in unsupportive environments, away from friends, or without the mental health resources they may have access to at school or college.

When LGBT youth were asked, “What is the most difficult problem facing you in your life these days?” The top answer was: “My parents and family are not accepting.” When a young LGBT person is thrown out of their family home or otherwise rejected, they are more than 8 times likely to attempt suicide, compared to youth whose families accept them for who they are.

LGBTQ youth facing a complicated summer need our help. Please consider giving at trvr.org/summerdonate. Other ways you can give include seeing if your employer will match your donation. Also during the summer, we’ve been grateful to companies such as Viacom and Deloitte, which have connected with us in valuable ways, such as marching with us at Pride and beautifying our Los Angeles and New York offices.

To help support Trevor as a company or individual, you can consider taking action in these ways:

The impact you make as an individual or company can help save young lives. Thank you for your support!

 


Take Part in Pride with Trevor

From May-October, The Trevor Project, along with partners Macy’s and AT&T, will be raising awareness about our lifesaving services by taking part in pride events across the nation. Find out how to participate and volunteer by clicking on an event below and registering. Thank you for showing LGBTQ youth that their lives matter!

May 14: DC Youth Pride

May 21: DC Trans Pride

June 3-5: Salt Lake City Pride

June 5: Queens Pride

June 11: Baton Rouge Pride

June 11: Brooklyn Pride

June 11: DC Capital Pride

June 12: Birmingham Pride

June 18-19: Chicago Pride

June 25: Nashville Pride

June 25-26: San Francisco Pride

June 26: Manhattan Pride

July 15-17: San Diego Pride

September 18: Dallas Pride

September 24: Memphis Pride

October 2: Castro Street Fair Pride

October 8-9: Atlanta Pride


Join Us at TrevorLIVE NY June 13

On June 13, 2016, Broadway stars will join New York’s LGBTQ community and allies at The Marriott Marquis as we celebrate TrevorLIVE New York, our irreverent evening of comedy and music, recognizing long-time supporters Jordan Roth and Richie Jackson as Trevor Hero Honorees. First-time Guest Director and Tony-nominee Leigh Silverman (Violet, Well) will be working with Guest Writer Tim Federle (Tuck Everlasting, Better Nate Than Ever) and special guests including NBC’s newest headliner of Hairspray Live! and Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein (Kinky Boots), Tony Award winner Judith Light (Transparent), Grammy winner Andrew Rannells (The Book of Mormon, Girls), and more to be announced.

“We are honored to recognize Jordan Roth and Richie Jackson as Trevor Heroes, leaders in our community who have been dedicated to our mission to end suicide for all LGBTQ youth. We are also delighted that Leigh Silverman and Tim Federle will bring their passion and creativity to the TrevorLIVE stage,” says Abbe Land, Executive Director and CEO of The Trevor Project.

President of Jujamcyn Theaters and Tony award-winning producer Jordan Roth is a theatre innovator, championing LGBTQ storylines that push the boundaries of Broadway with current shows including the Tony Award-winning Best Musicals The Book of Mormon, Kinky Boots, and Jersey Boys. His commitment to the arts and culture community is seen in his dedication to building Culturalist.com and the theater/philanthropy site Givenik.com as well as hosting the creative collective #MakingMondays on Periscope and Facebook Live. Roth’s inclusion in Out Magazine’s “Out 100” and his involvement in The Trevor Project, as well as his service on the Boards of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and Freedom to Marry have paved the way for change in the LGBTQ community.

Honored alongside Roth will be husband and President of Jackson Group Entertainment, Richie Jackson, whose passion for young people’s futures can be seen in his recent endowment of The Richie Jackson Fellowship to his alma mater, NYU Tisch School of The Arts, which will assist graduates in transition from academia to arts careers. For seven seasons, Jackson executive produced Showtime’s Nurse Jackie (Emmy and Golden Globe nominee) as well as John Cameron Mitchell’s film Shortbus. Both Roth and Jackson have been role models to the many young people The Trevor Project serves.

“While we are so grateful to accept the Trevor Project’s Hero Award, we know that the true heroes are Trevor’s counselors, volunteers, and staff who are literally saving the lives of tens of thousands of LGBTQ young people in crisis every year. We are honored to be celebrating them and the world they are creating, one call at a time,” say Roth and Jackson.

To buy tickets for TrevorLIVE NY, please go to http://ny.trevorlive.org


How Trevor Celebrated Volunteer Appreciation Month

This past year, The Trevor Project’s 920 volunteers helped us save young LGBTQ lives with over 50,000 hours of service across all Trevor departments. Whether these volunteers dedicate time to crisis services, outreach, administrative work, special events, or engagement efforts, each one plays a vital role in our mission to end suicide for all LGBTQ youth.

During Volunteer Appreciation Month in April, we wanted to thank them for all the hard work they do, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Throughout the month, we posted inspiring images of quotes from volunteers on social media, and celebrated them at nationwide events.

In New York, Trevor partner Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants donated their beautiful Hotel Eventi ballroom to Trevor Gives Thanks, an evening of volunteer recognition, where over 150 staff, volunteers, supporters, donors, and sponsors celebrated. Los Angeles volunteers were honored at donor Lisa Vanderpump’s elegant PUMP Restaurant and Lounge.

Our volunteers are truly the heart and soul of our mission to end suicide for all LGBTQ youth. To learn more about how to get involved with Trevor, visit our volunteer page here.


Trevor Celebrates Transgender Day of Visibility

Rachel Crandall, the head of transgender advocacy and education organization Transgender Michigan, founded Transgender Day of Visibility on March 31, 2009 as a way to celebrate and recognize the accomplishments of the transgender community. With 41 percent of transgender people who have attempted suicide, giving visibility to positive experiences in the community is a way to inspire folks to live as their authentic selves. At The Trevor Project, we have partnered with our Youth Advisory Council member Eli Erlick, director of Transgender Student Educational Resources, for the campaign, #MoreThanVisibility, which is an opportunity to share resources and start a dialogue about transgender justice. Show support of the transgender community by sharing the #MoreThanVisibility pin above on social media. By being visible as an ally, you are helping raise awareness and liberating folks who fear living as their authentic selves due to transphobia, violence towards the community, and/or lack of support.

We are here for the transgender community 24/7 at 1-866-488-7386 and thetrevorproject.org. Here are the stories of two trans women who are a part of The Trevor Project and making a positive difference in the transgender community.

Michaela Ivri Mendelsohn, Board Member of The Trevor Project

Transgender activist, public speaker, businesswoman, and Trevor Board member Michaela Ivri Mendelsohn always wanted to change the world. As a nine-year-old, she read 101 books, 70 percent of which were biographies of people she admired—Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln…but no one on the list was trans. “If there was one person who had asked me ‘Have you ever met someone who’s trans?’, it would have changed my life forever,” she says.

Now, as CEO of Pollo West Corp and the Founder of the California Transgender Workplace Program, as well as the mother of a toddler and three grown children who are making a difference in the world, Michaela is becoming the hero she always wanted for herself. Just last week, she spent time at Out and Equal’s Conference to discuss workplace equality and inclusion. And, on Transgender Day of Visibility, March 31, 2016, she will be at The Oaks in California to answer questions and educate folks about the trans community. “I’m visible in the community as a speaker and activist because when a person can put a face and a name to a word like ‘transgender’—when they can hear me be vulnerable and ask me questions, they’re more likely to open their hearts and minds,” she says.

With 12 transgender employees, four of which have become managers in six of her El Pollo Loco restaurants, Michaela is giving visibility to the trans experience within the workplace by promoting trans-friendly job conditions and advocating for trans folks so that they are able to find employment, social acceptance, and the encouragement to start raising families of their own. “If we really want social justice, we have to lift up the lowest common denominator—so that means giving trans people of color more jobs and opportunities. We all have to evolve with the change or we’ll be left behind,” she says.

Michaela has also brought visibility to the trans experience in media by consulting on the television show “Orange is The New Black.” While she recognizes how Laverne Cox, Janet Mock, and Caitlyn Jenner’s stories have raised awareness of the transgender community, what she really hopes for is that organizations like Trevor can offer more education about the trans experience on YouTube, in schools, and public places. “What opened my mind was hearing The Trevor Project’s Youth Advisory Council talk about the intersectionality of the trans experience and seeing how many gender nonconforming identities existed. I remember feeling so much pressure to be a certain way as a woman, and that obsession became another box that made my experience worse. This new generation is different and it’s so exciting to see gender nonconformity become a part of our future. People are recognizing that they can accept they are blends and they don’t need one gender to label themselves,” she says.

Eli Erlick, Youth Advisory Council Member of The Trevor Project

Steering the gender nonconformity conversation as the director of Trans Student Educational Resources is Trevor’s YAC member Eli Erlick, who became a transgender activist when she was 15 years old. After organizing an LGBT Conference, she founded Transgender Student Educational Resources, became a media ambassador for GLSEN, and now serves on the YAC to inspire young people to take collective action for the LGBTQ community, especially intersectionally marginalized groups such as young transgender people. “Youth are not only our future, but also our present, and we’re leading movements right now,” she says.

Through Transgender Student Educational Resources, Eli and her team created Trans Youth Leadership Summit, the only national program fostering the activism of young transgender people through collective organization, with applications open now till May 1. At the summit, participants will design activist art, build community, and collaborate on ways to create action around issues affecting young trans people. “Few people know that the most influential uprisings in the LGBTQ community were incited by young gender nonconforming and transgender people of color. Sylvia Rivera was only 17 and Marsha P. Johnson was only 23 at the time of Stonewall. We must get out into the streets. Visibility is not just being seen as an individual… it’s working together to transform society,” she says.

During Transgender Day of Visibility, celebrate transgender people who are making a difference by participating in #MoreThanVisibility events in your community. You can also help support transgender leaders by sharing the donation page of the Trans Youth Summit and consider becoming a part of the confidential, safe, supportive transgender community on TrevorSpace.org. “The more that youth connect on TrevorSpace.org, the more emboldened they’ll feel to be visible as themselves,” Michaela says. “Transgender Day of Visibility is a day of empowerment and getting the recognition we deserve,” Eli says.

The Trevor Project supports all on Transgender Day of Visibility. We are here for you 24/7 at 1-866-488-7386 and thetrevorproject.org.