I came to Portland because it just wasn’t safe for me to be queer in the rural Oregon town I grew up in. My Dad actually bought me the bus ticket to get here, because he saw how depressed and terrified I was. Now I’m trying to find a place to live in Portland, and a job. Coming to SMYRC is the one thing I look forward to each week. It’s a place where people actually care about you. I honestly think I’d have slit my wrists by now if it weren’t for SMYRC. — Adam, age 16
We’re writing to you with some really great news – an anonymous donor has issued a $10,000 matching gift challenge to Q Center supporters! That means that for every dollar you give, it will be matched, up to $10,000!
BUT WE MUST MEET THIS MATCH BY FRIDAY, JANUARY 30TH!
With the critical support you give, Q Center will be able to continue to provide resources, programs and safe spaces, like our Youth and Young Adult Program that includes SMYRC (Sexual & Gender Minority Resource Center) and Pride Rural Outreach Project.
The youth and young adult members of our community are consistently worse off than their straight peers when it comes to issues like homelessness, harassment, drug and alcohol use, major depression, and suicide.
In 2015, Q Center will serve more than 300 youth and young adults ages 12-23 at our youth center. During Drop In hours each week, youth socialize, get dinner, use internet and computers, and participate in workshops on topics like how to interrupt bullying, create healthy relationships or write a résumé. Youth can also get the help they need through professional Counseling & Case Management, take part in Leadership Development, participate in Community Service Projects, and they hold monthly Social Events like Open Mic night, drag performances, or movie night.
Approximately 85% of our youth participants are low-income or live in poverty, 70% are homeless or housing challenged, and 40% come from communities of color.
If you agree that it’s crucial to help the LGBTQ community achieve the highest possible level of well-being, and that happy, healthy LGBTQ youth and young adults are imperative to our community’s future vitality and success, please make the most generous gift you can today to Q Center.
And please come visit us soon at Q Center.
Your Q Center Interim Board of Directors:
Antoinette Edwards, Co-Chair
Karen Petersen, Co-Chair