More than 1,500 New Yorkers gathered today in Manhattan to mourn the death of a 32 year-old gay man, who was shot down on Friday just blocks away from the historic Stonewall Inn in an apparent act of anti-gay bias.
How you can help the Ali Forney Center, the LGBT homeless youth center destroyed by Hurricane Sandy
Take action: Text GLAAD to 80888 to give $10 to the Ali Forney Center through Thursday, November 8!
Hurricane Sandy struck the east coast last week, leaving communities across the northeast paralyzed and millions without power.
Among the lives and property tragically lost was the Ali Forney Center's drop-in center for LGBT youth in Manhattan. The center was a place where many homeless LGBT youth in New York City were able to go for food, showers, clothing, medical care, HIV testing and treatment and substance abuse services.
The high rate of homelessness among LGBT youth is an epidemic plaguing our country and we need to stand together to help those organizations working to make a difference in the lives of these young people.
In response, GLAAD is asking our supporters to make a gift to the Ali Forney Center this week. You can donate $10 to the Ali Forney Center by texting GLAAD to 80888 and following instructions. All of the money raised through November 8 will be donated to the Ali Forney Center.
Carl Siciliano, the Executive Director of the Ali Forney Center, said in a statement: "This facility provided care to the most vulnerable youth served by AFC, those stranded out on the streets awaiting shelter. Having our drop-in center destroyed means it is likely that we are among the hardest-hit of all LGBTQ organizations in the city. While our new 24-hour drop-in center will open as planned in a different location, it will not be ready for full service for several months. "We are pursuing every means possible to take care of our youth in the interim, and it is my hope that our community and city will rally behind us as we prepare to face one of the greatest challenges in AFC's history."
GLAAD President Herndon Graddick said: "The Ali Forney Center is an invaluable organization to so many young people today and we hope you will consider helping them. We continue to keep all of those individuals and families affected by Hurricane Sandy in our thoughts, as well as the first responders working to keep us safe."
GLAAD's Manhattan office reopened on Monday, November 5, after being closed for a week due to Hurricane Sandy. We are pleased to report that all GLAAD staff members are safe. New York staff can be reached by email or by calling GLAAD's main number at 212-629-3322, then selecting the staff extension (direct lines may not work).