For me the Holidays are for celebrating the love of family, and giving to those who are less fortunate then ourselves. Sadly, this time of the year many in our LGBT community do not have family to share the holidays with, due to their families inability to accept them and love them unconditionally, because they are homosexual, something they had absolutely no choice about.
So I am urging all of you to open your homes and hearts to our LGBT&Q community members who have no where to go this Christmas, no one to share this wonderful season with, who are spending this season alone at home or on the street, feeling like no one gives a damn about them.
According to the Los Angeles Times,
Every year, hundreds of gay youths end up alone on the streets of Los Angeles County, where they make up a disproportionate share of the at least 4,200 people under 25 who are homeless on any given day.
A recent study found that 40% of the homeless youths in Hollywood, a gathering spot for these young people, identify themselves as gay, lesbian, bisexual or unsure of their sexual orientation. Five percent say they are transgender.
These startling statistic's are just from Los Angeles County and Hollywood.
In June, The Center for American Progress estimated "that gay and transgender youth account for 20-40 percent of homeless youth in the US, while only about 5-10 percent of the general youth population is LGBT."
And it isn't just the homeless LGBT youth and adults that are struggling and have no where to go this holiday season, many LGBT, have been disowned by their family and are finding themselves alone during Christmas.
So I am asking my readers, to reach out during this season of love and giving. If you know someone in this situation I am asking you to reach out to them and open your heart and home, buy them a gift, invite them for dinner, let them know that you care and that you are delighted they are a part of your life.
If you don't know anyone who is in this situation, you can contact local LGBT organizations and ask where you can drop off care packages and presents for homeless LGBT youth or adults, you can invite them out for dinner,donate blankets and warm clothes, give gift cards to McDonalds, Burger King and numerous other restaurants, so they can get something to eat...anything...just please reach out to our LGBT community that could be alone and without family this time of year!
You can visit http://glbtnearme.org/ to find an LGBT organization near you.
Also, the spirit of giving to this community isn't only needed once a year, there is a continuing need for donations all year round, so don't just block yourself into giving only once a year, give all year long if you can, be there for our LGBT community, become the family they are lacking.
Remember, the greatest gift that you can give yourself, is the love you give to others.
(Remember to be safe about who you invite into your home)