WHERE TO BEGIN?
Over the course of August and September 2015, BOOM!Health visionaries gathered input from the Bronx’s LGBTQ community to assess the needs and expectations of this community. This input has led to the Bronx’s LGBTQ Center developing a blueprint and strategic plan in how to serve a community that for too long has ranked among NYC’s most underserved populations.Download the Business Plan
According to a recent study, despite NYC being home to far more LGBTQ people than anyplace else in the country, during the past year, 62% of survey respondents had difficulty paying for basic needs, and 39% had been verbally harassed in public because they were LGBTQ. People of color and transgender individuals were shown to be subject to even greater disparities. When asked whether they believe that there is a safe place for the LGBTQ community in the Bronx, 67% said no.
A safe place for the LGBTQ community was often described by participants as a place where all members of the community can express who they are without feeling that they are being judged or threatened. Participants described their ideal space as one that welcomes and unites individuals across the LGBTQ community and beyond, and that actively works to reduce incidents of violence and harassment.
OUR VISION & MISSION
The center will be a destination of belonging and compassion across generations. It will provide a safe space in the Bronx for the LGBTQ community and will empower them to reach their maximum potential.
VALUES THAT DRIVE THE PRIDE CENTER
- Be inspiration
- Welcome everyone
- Fostering accomplishment
- Accepting without judgment
- Exemplify diversity
- Ensure equality
- Demonstrate harmony
- Promote self-improvement
- Trailblaze innovation
- Have fun
CREATING A SAFE PLACE
BOOM!Health has secured 15,000 square feet on the street level and mezzanine of the former Fordham branch of the New York Public Library, at 2556 Bainbridge Avenue, in the Central Bronx, to launch and operate the Center. This remarkable site will offer, for the first time in the Bronx, an appropriate space in which to affirm and advance the diversity, strengths, and future of the LGBTQ community in a revitalized borough.
WELLNESS & EMPOWERMENT
Wellness and Empowerment will be the center’s primary focus during its first year in operation. This includes emotional support services and also providing a social environment where individuals with common experiences can find mutual support.
EDUCATIONAL, VOCATIONAL, & ECONOMIC INITIATIVES
In the Bronx LGBTQ center’s second year, we will introduce tutoring, college prep, job readiness, workplace skills, and job placement. It’s our hope to better prepare the LGBTQ for a demanding workplace.
DURING YEAR ONE & TWO
Informational events will introduce local politicians, business people, and Bronx residents to the programs and services available to community through the Bronx LGBTQ Center. These will increase visibility and community safety.
SOCIAL, RECREATIONAL, & CULTURAL AFFAIRS
DURING YEAR ONE & TWO
The Bronx LGBTQ Center will enrich the lives of the LGBTQ community and its allies by providing space for local LGBTQ-focused activities, and developing a Bronx LGBTQ library.
FOCUS ON LGBTQ YOUTH
The Bronx LGBTQ center will be designed to provide educational and career development with the goal of placing LGBTQ youth more firmly on a path to upward mobility and economic self-sufficiency.
The Bronx LGTBQ Center will be designed to provide educational and career development with the goal of placing LGBTQ youth more firmly on a path to upward mobility and economic self-sufficiency.
LGBTQ youth will have opportunities for real-life job training and work experience by participating in a peer-development and work-study program through social enterprise initiatives.
The Bronx LGBTQ Center intends to connect with it’s audience through a coordinated marketing effort, and will reach and sustain its goals through a clear growth plan.
The Bronx LGBTQ Center will be a safe place for LGBTQ Bronx residents with a focus on retention, to avoid one-time engagement, along with awareness/community relations and impact messaging. We’ll begin marketing through the use of our website, public-relations and messaging campaigns, public announcements, social media, media partnerships and more.
Other LGBTQ centers have grown slowly, gradually securing both funding and a firm base of community support. The Bronx LGBTQ Center’s identified growth plan is designed to take into account the time it will take to secure the location and renovate it. Read our full financial forecast on page 23 of our business plan.
OUR HISTORY WITH THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why is BOOM!Health taking the lead on the Center?
BOOM!Health is an innovative, community-based nonprofit organization in the Bronx that is deeply committed to a vision of health, wellness and safety for all, particularly the needs of marginalized and stigmatized communities at the highest risk. They have been and will continue to invest in Bronx residents as they move forward along a path toward self-sufficiency. BOOM!Health identified a community need to enhance services for the LGBTQ community in the Bronx and has stepped up with a solution through the creation of a Bronx LGBTQ Center.
Why locate an LGBTQ Center in the Bronx?
The Bronx currently does not have a brick and mortar Center for the LGBTQ community. We feel that establishing physical space is essential to addressing the economic and personal development needs of the LGBTQ community in the Bronx.
How will this Bronx LGBTQ Center be sustained?
This Bronx LGBTQ Center will be sustained through a unique model that integrates social enterprise businesses and traditional donor engagement. The profits generated by the social enterprises housed in the Center will be reinvested back into the Center’s programs, services, and operations.
Have other organizations already demonstrated best practices/keys to success that might be relevant to the Center?
BOOM!Health has a long history of successfully running programs that serve the LGBTQ community in the Bronx. From our first efforts in 1987 to conduct outreach and raise awareness of HIV among various groups to our current programs and services, BOOM!Health continues to address some of the urgent health needs of the Bronx LGBTQ community. This Bronx LGBTQ Center will take our own best practices and incorporate the expertise from the community and our partners. For example, we are consulting with various leaders who excel at serving the LGBTQ community, such as representatives from The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community Center in Manhattan and Callen-Lorde Community Health Center, former leaders of the Hetrick Martin Institute and CenterLink, and other leaders in New York City and beyond.
What can the community do to help?
BOOM!Health is excited to engage the public through a community visioning survey that will gather valuable feedback on how this Bronx LGBTQ Center can best meet the needs of the LGBTQ community in the Bronx. To complete the survey, log onto https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BHPrideCenter. Further, BOOM!Health is eager to partner with donors that believe in the vision of a Bronx LGBTQ Center, seek to support the LGBTQ community on their path to self-sufficiency and value the Center’s sustainability plans.
When is the expected grand opening of the Bronx LGBTQ Center?
We expect to open the Center as early as 2018.
Where will the Bronx LGBTQ Center be located?
We are working diligently to secure space for the center.