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Gays and lesbians
look to help in hurricane relief effort

Gays and lesbians
look to help in hurricane relief effort

Katrina_victim

As a massive relief effort gets under way in response to the overwhelming devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, many gays and lesbians are asking how they can help.

As a massive relief effort gets under way in response to the overwhelming devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, many gays and lesbians are asking how they can help. In most cases monetary donations are the best way to show your support, but if you happen to live near the affected areas and were untouched by the devastation, you may also want to consider volunteering your time or opening up your home to displaced victims. Here are a couple of gay organizations that are currently coordinating relief efforts:

The Metropolitan Community Church has set up a Katrina Relief Center at www.mccchurch.org/katrina/index.html. The church is gathering "accurate and timely information" in an attempt to provide a conduit for sharing the latest information about the disaster and the relief effort. It has also set up a relief fund where gays and lesbians can send their dollars and is also setting up a means of providing other kinds of assistance as the needs become known.

For more information check out the church's Web site or contact Connie Gilpin at MCC of the Living Spring at region2communications@mccchurch.org. Or contact the Reverend Kurt Krieger at (816) 931-0750; (816) 210-5443; or region2kurt@yahoo.com.

In addition to MCC, the gay-focused Rainbow World Fund has launched a Hurricane Katrina Relief Campaign. The organization has partnered with America's Second Harvest to help the survivors of the hurricane. Donations to the fund will go to provide meals and groceries, transport food to survivors, and secure additional warehouse space to assist food banks in resuming and maintaining operations. One hundred percent of the funds donated to the RWF Hurricane Katrina Relief Fund will go directly toward helping the survivors recover. Donate at www.rainbowfund.org/donate.

Also, the National Youth Advocacy Coalition announced the formation of the Hurricane Katrina LGBT Relief Fund to ensure that LGBT youth and families receive the critical support they need to regain stability in their lives. NYAC is working in partnership with Children of Lesbians and Gays Everywhere, Family Pride Coalition, Mautner Project: The National Lesbian Health Organization, National Black Justice Coalition, and the National Center for Lesbian Rights, among others. Contributions can be made at www.nyacyouth.org. Donors will be able to find out more about the impact of their gifts in the coming weeks on a new blog being launched on the NYAC Web site.

In light of the cancellation of the gay Southern Decadence celebration in New Orleans, which was slated for this weekend, several members of San Francisco's Mardi Gras club, Krewe de Kinque, have organized a Western Decadence benefit for hurricane relief. The event is set for Monday, September 5, 3-7 p.m. at the Edge bar in San Francsico's Castro district. All proceeds will go to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.

"My family and most all of my relatives have no home to go back to," said Krewe member Stephen Rowell, a native of New Orleans. "[They have] no homes, no jobs, and hardly any hope. We need to do something." Donations can be mailed to Krewe de Kinque at 156 Hancock Street #4, San Francisco, CA 94114, and will be forwarded to the Red Cross. To volunteer or donate prizes to the event, call Gary Virginia at (415) 626-5004.

If your organization is coordinating relief efforts in the aftermath of the hurricane, please contact the editors of The Advocate at news@advocate.com, and we will include you in future postings on Advocate.com.

Advocate Magazine - KehlaniAdvocate Magazine - Gus Kenworthy

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