Queridos hermanos y hermanas,
What a year 2016 has been.
I just completed an entire year of being part of an amazing brotherhood of Latino men – the Latino Community Foundation’s San Francisco Men’s Giving Circle. It has been a privilege to be surrounded by such talented, compassionate, and strong men who care deeply about their communities and heritage. This year, we raised and awarded $36,000 to Latino nonprofits that work in SF, Oakland, Redwood City and Stockton to strengthen their communities. All four organizations we supported are also led by strong and caring Latino men –Roberto, George, Ivan and Sammy– who love and challenge our young men to reach for their highest potential.These men uplift my spirits.
Together, we have made a difference.
I must also admit that I am still cycling through various emotions as I imagine what our nation will look like in a presidential administration where bigotry, sexism, homophobia, and racism are accepted. I feel victimized as I wake up each day and learn about hate crimes taking place across the country. My (our) hope for continued progress in the LGBTQ community has been hijacked.
But as fighters, we don’t do victim well. I want to help channel this victimization into power. We are a people with tremendous assets, resilience and unyielding hope for a better future. We have power.
That is why I have renewed my commitment to the Latino Community Foundation by proudly joining the newly formed LGBTQ Giving Circle and I call upon many of the LGBTQ Latinos across California to join me. The cost to join is $84 a month. The benefit: a community of people who care and action. All of the funds we raise as a group will go back into the community. 2017 is the year to invest in our grassroots leaders working on the frontlines.
While it may feel as though dark times loom ahead, my faith in humanity is restored by the collective care and compassion we have for each other. I look forward to working with my fellow LGBTQ Latinos in preserving our rights, funding LGBTQ health initiatives and outreach, advancing trans rights, protecting immigrant rights and so much more. Furthermore, I look forward to bringing our stories to the larger Latino Giving Circle Network– now a powerful group of more than 335 Latino donors. Together, we can work in solidarity, building power for our communities and ensuring that love wins.
To join the Latinx LGBTQ Giving Circle, CLICK HERE.