Pride Month is an annual celebration held during the entire month of June to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Riots in Greenwich Village, New York. This year, our community honors and celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. It’s a very special year for Brave Trails, as well, as we celebrate our 5th summer of empowering LGBTQ youth through our leadership summer camp! In honor of Pride Month and all it stands for, here are some ways to celebrate:
No. 1 – BECOME AN ACTIVIST & ALLY
One of the greatest things you can do to celebrate Pride Month is to become an LGBTQ activist/ally, and continue that ally-ship throughout your life. An ally is someone who makes a personal commitment to fight oppression, provides support, and actively educates themselves about different identities and experiences. Help advocate for LGBTQ rights and do your part to create safer environments for LGBTQ folks in your community at large!
No. 2 – LEARN ABOUT LGBTQ LEADERS IN HISTORY
Similarly to the way in which Black History was suppressed for years, LGBTQ history continues to be left out of textbooks and classroom conversations across the nation. Take some time this month to learn about the LGBTQ leaders who paved the way for a better future for folks in our community. Discover leaders like, Marsha P Johnson, who was one of the prominent figures in the Stonewall Uprising of 1969.
No. 3 – USE INCLUSIVE LANGUAGE
This month and onward, make a commitment to start using language that is more inclusive of the people around you. By learning appropriate terminology and respecting pronouns, you’re showing through words and actions that you’re truly working toward making the world a more accepting space for everyone. A great resource to look over is GLAAD’s Ally’s Guide to Terminology!
No. 4 – ATTEND A PRIDE EVENT
There will be many Pride celebrations taking place in cities across the US this month. Grab your friends and family, and take part in one of these festivals to celebrate love and equality! Click here for a full list of pride events happening around the world!
No. 5 – SUPPORT LGBTQ OWNED BUSINESSES & ROCK SOME PRIDE GEAR!
One fun way to get involved in Pride Month is to buy some awesome pride gear. When shopping for Pride gear, try your best to buy from LGBTQ owned businesses or purchase from companies donating their pride sale profits to LGBTQ organizations. Here are a few brands to check out this Pride season: Pride Socks, TomboyX, Green Box Shop, Trans is Beautiful Apparel, Kirrin Finch, Autostraddle, Wildfang, Urban Outfitters, Converse, & American Eagle.
No. 6 – DONATE TO LGBTQ NON-PROFITS
There are many non-profits working tirelessly to create a difference in the lives of LGBTQ teens and adults. We, like many other non-profit organizations, rely on financial support from donors to keep our mission going. Donations help create a better future for LGBTQ folks! Click here to donate to Brave Trails! Here are a few other great organizations to consider donating to: Tegan and Sara Foundation, Trailmixer, Expand
No. 7 – VOLUNTEER WITH LGBTQ ORGANIZATIONS
Can’t donate financially? Another way to support LGBTQ Non-Profits is donating your time and resources. Brave Trails has many rewarding opportunities when it comes to volunteering: make an impact with LGBTQ youth by volunteering as a staff member or leading a workshop at camp! Click here to learn more about volunteer opportunities with us!
No. 8 – LEARN ABOUT THE ISSUES & MAKE AN IMPACT
It’s incredibly important to be informed of the issues that effect those that identify as LGBTQ. Laws and stigmas that make it unsafe to be a part of our community still exist to this very day. One of the ways you can help change this is by registering to vote and using the power of your voice to adopt legislation that protects the rights of the LGBTQ community.
No. 9 – RAISE THE LGBTQ PRIDE FLAG (BETTER YET, RAISE THE TRANS FLAG!)
The rainbow pride flag has been a symbol of the LGBT community since 1978, when Gilbert Baker’s design first appeared in the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade. The colors on the Pride Flag represent: Life(Red), Healing(Orange), Sunshine(Yellow), Nature(Green), Magic(Blue), & Spirit(Purple). Hanging the pride flag in your local business or home shows LGBTQ folks that you support them and are a safe haven for them. Consider raising other flags, like the trans flag, in solidarity to show your understanding of the importance of trans visibility and safety!
No. 10 – ACCEPT & LOVE THE FOLKS AROUND YOU
This month is about spreading LOVE! It’s important to always remind those around you that you love them unconditionally. It’s increasingly important to tell friends and family that you are someone who will continue to love them whole-heartedly, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Spread some love to your LGBTQ friends and family this season!
HAPPY PRIDE Y’ALL! 🏳️🌈💕
Jake Young | Assistant Director