The Issue: Scarcity of LGBT Support Services
Because Georgia's LGBT community is both diverse and spread out, finding support services and social opportunities can be challenging. In fact, during a 2011 LGBT needs-assessment survey conducted by The Phillip Rush Center, 72% of respondents said support services were an unmet need, and 56% said that a safe meeting was their top unmet necessity. As a response, the Center spent two years creating offices and meeting spaces to support community members and to give them a place to meet and make friends outside of bars. But the Center still lacks a space intimate enough for confidential support groups.
The Campaign: Building a Space for Confidential Support
All donations to this Grassroots campaign will be used by The Phillip Rush Center to create a space for LGBT support services. Every $10 raised will be used by the organization to renovate support-group spaces at the center. Currently, organizations and allied groups use the venue to host meetings and events for LGBT people including large town-hall forums, group trainings, fundraisers, and live performances. By creating a space devoted solely to support services, groups could go beyond social activities and focus on the effects of domestic violence and other sensitive subject matters. The renovations would also build out space for staff and volunteer workstations.
The Phillip Rush Center
The Phillip Rush Center has become the literal embodiment of its name. Having evolved beyond a mere building, the space has become the central gathering place for the Atlanta area LGBT community. This massive venue is not only a home to 10 LGBT non-profits, but also a space used by dozens of allied groups including Just Us, SAGE, and Transgender Individuals Living Their Truth. These organizations host everything from yoga and movie screenings to advocacy campaigns and training sessions for social service agencies, weaving a supportive net of assistance and social opportunity for the LGBT community. The Center goes above and beyond, too, providing referrals for housing, conducting youth empowerment workshops, and running HIV testing—anything community members need to improve their lives.