Tag: Press Release

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Receives $25k Safety & Security Grant from the State of Pennsylvania

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

December 16, 2022

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition is extremely thankful to the State of Pennsylvania’s PCCD’s Nonprofit Security Fund Grant Program for awarding us a $25,000 grant to improve the safety and security of The Loop, our HEART Program housing locations, and our LGBTQ+ Health Clinic opening in early 2023.

We are a grassroots organization that works to create a safe and welcoming environment for LGBTQ+ people in Lancaster County. We do this by providing education, advocacy, and support to our community and to local businesses and organizations looking to make a positive impact.

“We live in a time of increased targeted violence against LGBTQ+ individuals and families, as well as focused attacks on our basic rights. Our headquarters is located in the heart of Lancaster City. The concern for the safety of our staff and volunteers has slowed our progress with initiatives and programming, but this grant will give us the ability to swiftly implement a person-centered security model that is rooted in working to ensure that all intersections of our community feel welcomed and protected.

We commit to making choices that shift how security is often used in a way that can feel threatening to targeted communities. The biggest failure in that approach is that it is often used to intimidate and justify discrimination.

We will use innovative methods that continue to involve input from our community. And just like equity is a process and not a destination, we will continue to reevaluate our security protocols so that they are not only protective, but inclusive and welcoming to all.”

K. Foley (she/they), Executive Director

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition to Participate in the 2022 Extra Give

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

November 15, 2022

Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition, November 18 2022

Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition on November 18th

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will participate in the 2022 Extra Give on Friday, November 18th! Make sure to Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition throughout the day to help support our continued efforts to create a truly equitable Lancaster County, and to develop The Loop; our new hub for safety and community in Downtown Lancaster.

We’re planning to celebrate four years of Extra Give participation with an event-packed day full of celebration and opportunities to see the impact of your donations. Here’s what we’re planning throughout the day:

7-9AM: Morning Rush Hour at Square One
Start off the morning right with coffee, snacks, and even a selection of beans at Square One Coffee Co. 10% of proceeds will go to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

9AM-2PM: Information & Swag Table at Clipper Stadium
Hang out with our very own Program Coordinator Glitch SteelHeart and learn about the Coalition’s services, programming, and training opportunities for individuals, organizations, and more! Score some swag while you’re there to represent our local Queer community!

6-11PM: Extra Give Gaming Livestream on Our YouTube Channel
Join us online starting at 6PM for hours of Queer gaming fun with several different hosts! We’ll start off with classic and modern PC, PSX, and PS2 games until 8PM, then power on our imaginations for a live tabletop gaming experience from our LGBT RPG group! Keep an eye out for the possibility of special prizes and shout-outs on stream!

7-11PM: Community Celebration & Raffle at The Loop
RSVP now to celebrate another year of progress and giving in our community party at The Loop! Enjoy live music from DJ GiGi, and stick around ’til the end of the night to join in on a raffle ticket fundraiser for a unique piece of artwork by Lancaster artist Jeff Sibbett!

We’re so excited to see you there, and to thank you for everything you’ve helped to make possible. Make sure to Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition on November 18th to support community, authenticity, and love!

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Marks Trans Day of Remembrance (TDOR)

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

November 14, 2022

Every year on or around the 20th of November trans people worldwide gather for Transgender Day of Remembrance to remember those we have lost to violence in the past year.

Year over year, the average number of trans deaths is on the rise. Since October 2021, at least 315 trans individuals have died due to murder or suicide. This figure does not include closeted individuals, those whose trans identity was erased in their obituaries, and many more who we must honor and remember.

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will host a digital installation piece honoring the names, identities, and histories of trans community members we’ve lost, which will be installed in our courtyard at The Loop; 117 E Chestnut Street. Join us on November 20th to ensure that those we have lost will not be forgotten.

SLAY Event October 28th [Cancelled]

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

October 17, 2022

The Monsters are Coming Out of the Closet

Unfortunately, we’ve had to cancel this event. Stay tuned for future announcements! Tickets are now available to join Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition in our celebration of Queer identity, found family, our upcoming fourth anniversary, and the spooky season at our SLAY event at the Imperial Terrace on Friday, October 28th! Doors open at 7 PM

They say Halloween is Queer Christmas, and we’re ready to celebrate! Support the Coalition and celebrate our THIRD ANNIVERSARY and FIRST EVER Halloween fundraiser bash: SLAY!!

Dine on a spread to die for on the Imperial Terrace, sip on signature spirits, pose in your freak it dress for Michelle Johnsen Photography, and slay the dance floor with DJ GIGI!

We’re featuring surprise guests, spooky prizes, and swag for days, darling.
ALL are welcome :jack_o_lantern: Gaybies and minors must be accompanied by a guardian

Tickets are available for purchase here.

In order to protect our vulnerable immunocompromised population, masking is highly recommended for this in-person event. Attendees must be vaccinated against Covid-19.

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Unveils The Loop

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

June 7, 2022

The Loop, Central Pennsylvania's first nonprofit hub

On June 5th, 2022 Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition launched The Loop: Central Pennsylvania’s first nonprofit community hub. Along with the Coalition’s LGBTQ+ center, this space will house multiple other nonprofit agencies led by or serving BIPOC communities including:

  • Patients R Waiting
  • Common Wheel
  • NAACP 
  • Raiz 
  • Latino Empowerment Project
  • Union Community Care
    • Our 1-3 year plan includes a free health clinic focused on LGBTQ+ proficiency, spearheaded by Lancaster LGBTQ+ Health Consortium. 

This space will represent a true powerhouse of individuals and leading nonprofits working with vulnerable populations coalescing to create meaningful progress towards an equitable Lancaster County.

The Loop will represent a fully affirming location where all intersections of our community will be served among the growing services of the Coalition. This will include youth programming, a transgender and nonbinary support group, library and community connection space, case management services, legal support, educational opportunities, and a low-cost health clinic. 

HEART (Homelessness Emergency Assistance Response Team)

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition’s HEART Program is a subsidized communal housing model that provides a supporting home, resources, case management, and skills training so that vulnerable LGBTQ+ community members can truly thrive.

A primary focus and cornerstone of services is HEART’s SEED (Social Emotional Enrichment Development) Program, ensuring that individuals experiencing homelessness or who are at risk of becoming homeless can receive culturally competent case management and referral services. This program was developed to serve the residents of our HEART Program. 

Queer Health Advocacy Alliance

We will be working along with Dr. Lake from Comprehensive Health, Penn Medicine and Dr. Sharee Livingston, representing UPMC & Patients R Waiting to identify and connect LGBTQ+ proficient healthcare providers, while conducting and influencing research for Central Pennsylvania and all intersections of the LGBTQ+ community. 

Even more important as we know: 

  • In 2019, 56% of LGBTQ+ individuals reported facing discrimination in healthcare settings
  • In 2020 this number increased to 61%

Stage Q

Among our many enrichment and educational offerings, The Loop presents Stage Q; a welcoming space for emerging artists to share their talents. 

We are grateful for the opportunity to make this dream a reality with your support. This kind of collective effort from established entities and community stakeholders emboldens our mission toward true equity in action. This is a monumental step towards creating a Lancaster County where we all live full, courageous, and authentic lives. Thank you for your help in making history! 

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Opening New HEART House

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

January 11, 2022

We are beyond thrilled and honored to announce that with the amazing help of our community, we are reopening our LGBTQ+ affirming HEART (Homelessness Emergency Assistance & Response Team) house in the next few weeks!

HEART will house five LGBTQ residents struggling with homelessness, housing insecurity, and non-affirming situations, and provide them with programming, job assistance, and loving support. The Coalition will also work with community partners to offer enrichment training, such as budgeting, health resources, and other life skills.

HEART also offers a warm-handoff service to housing and medical services to provide emotional support for program participants. To further ensure resource providers are capable of providing culturally competent services, we provide cultural competency training to community stakeholders and potential partners around serving the LGBTQ+ population.

Now that we have hired a Director of Programming to manage the program and volunteers, HEART will expand to work with persons experiencing homelessness on the streets to help them access safe and inclusive housing, and mitigate their vulnerability to COVID-19 by providing PPE, hand sanitizer and resources.

At this time, we are unable to offer emergency crisis shelter. Applicants must have some form of income and have the ability to manage their general needs and safety. If you are in need of immediate shelter call crisis intervention at (717) 394-2631 or 211.

Apply for Residence »
Information for sponsors »

About the HEART Program:
There is a housing crisis in Lancaster County and extremely limited LGBTQ+ affirming housing. Over 70% of our Pandemic Relief Emergency Fund recipients reported housing and rental assistance as their primary need. Currently there are no fully affirming shelters in Lancaster County and bed availability is scarce.

On February 1, 2021, the HEART Program opened its 6-month pilot low-cost housing location, offering individuals sheltering in unaffirming environments a chance to live in a supportive home. The Coalition helps subsidize rent according to each person’s individual needs and works with community partners to offer enrichment training, such as budgeting, health resources, and other life skills.

2021 GAYLA November 14th

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

October 26, 2021

2021 GAYLA

The Night We’ve Been Dreaming of is Finally Here!

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will celebrate Queer identity, found family, and the third anniversary of our launch at our QUEER GAYLA at Tellus360 on Sunday, November 14th!

Attendees are encouraged to come dressed in their galactic best to be seen and adored on our Rainbow Carpet! Michelle Johnsen will be on-site assisting with photography, and an exclusive signature cocktail will be available all night long.

Awards Ceremony ticket holders will join our Galactic MC Chi Chi Mizrahi at 5PM on a journey through the stars, honoring changemakers in the Lancaster community. After 7PM, everyone’s invited to our intergalactic dance party featuring a live mix by DJ Salinger!

Tickets are available for purchase here.

Masks and proof of COVID-19 vaccination will be mandatory for this in-person event.

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Hosting Local Vaccination Clinics

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

June 10, 2021

SHOTS Event Graphic

June 12, 8AM – 5PM SHOTS: Vogue, Vaccines, & Visibility
Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition, in partnership with Patients R Waiting and Union Community Care’s Health Equity NOW initiative, is hosting a Moderna vaccine clinic at Union Community Care on June 12th from 8AM to 5PM. The event, titled SHOTS: Vogue, Vaccines, & Visibility, will include LGBTQ+ affirming vendors and pride swag! DJ Salinger will be performing from 2-5PM, and from 3-5PM ballroom legend Niambi Prodigy will make an unprecedented comeback after having previously leaving the ballroom scene.

Niambi E Stanley AKA Niambi Prodigy (she/her) is a ballroom icon and historian, entrepreneur, trans activist, and mental wellness advocate. A prominent member of the Lancaster’s drag community with humble beginnings in the underground Philadelphia ballroom scene, Niambi has competed as a ballroom voguer for over 25 years. In that time, she has won numerous trophies, accolades, and awards for her dedication, excellence, and contributions to the art of vogue.

June 12, 5PM Double Vaccination Party
After the SHOTS event wraps up at 5PM, The Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will host a double vaccination party from 5PM to midnight at Spring House Brewing Company, at 209 Hazel St. in downtown Lancaster.

June 12, 2PM – 7PM High Fever Party 
High Fever will host a pride-themed party at Marion Court, at 7 E. Marion St. in downtown Lancaster. The party will go from 2 to 7 p.m. and will have a DJ, a drag show, drinks and food. Admission is $10.

June 27, 8AM – 5PM Salsa & MerenGay Vaccination Clinic
In partnership with Patients R Waiting and Union Community Care’s Health Equity NOW initiative, Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition is hosting a vaccine clinic at McCaskey High School. Stick around for an LGBTQ+ inclusive salsa lesson at 2PM! DJ Ecliptic will also be performing from 2-5PM.

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Unveils Queer Health Advocacy Alliance

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

June 8, 2021

Queer Health Advocacy Alliance Logo

In cooperation with Patients R Waiting and Dr. Sharee Livingston, OBGYN, Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition’s Queer Health Advocacy Alliance unites healthcare providers across disciplines who advocate for and are knowledgeable about the health and wellness needs of the LGBTQ+ community. With a founding membership consisting of Dr. Sharee Livingston and Karen Foley, MA, LPC, our goal is to create an intricate network of advanced providers for comprehensive coordination of care for the LGBTQ+ community.

Seeking healthcare as a Queer individual is often a daunting task, particularly in Central Pennsylvania. Finding affirming practitioners who are knowledgable about the intricacies of Queer healthcare can feel impossible, especially if one doesn’t know where to start, and LGBTQ+ communities have historically not been counted in large data systems.

According to data we collected in the PA 2020 LGBTQ+ Health Needs Assessment, more than 1 in 3 respondents do not believe their healthcare providers have the medical expertise related to their health needs as a Queer individual, and 4 in 10 experience at least one barrier to healthcare. This limits the access to health and wellness resources of a population which already experiences increased rates of health challenges as a result of social, environmental, cultural, and institutional factors.

The Queer Health Advocacy Alliance will join forces to remove barriers, activate research, and ensure fully culturally humble healthcare for all intersections by:

  • Identifying, connecting, and training a network of providers that are proficient in all intersections of the LGBTQ+ community of Central Pennsylvania
  • Breaking down barriers to access for patients and communication between hospitals and providers
  • Providing scholarships to interns seeking to specialize in LGBTQ+ Healthcare (with a focus on funding multilingual and BIPOC interns)
  • Identifying and conducting necessary research for LGBTQ+ health needs