Can you believe another year has passed already? Some of 2010’s biggest moments were: same sex marriage was signed into law in DC, we saw marriage restored in California only to be taken away yet again and we all bid farewell to Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Unfortunately, we also saw far too many suicides among our LGBTQI youth or those simply thought to be. The events have been devastating and farspread but they have brought about a lot of attention. Attention that can help change attitudes, make people think twice before acting or speaking, even change policies in schools that will help keep everyone safe. These events, although tragic, brought out campaigns to let our youth know that things will get better, we do care and there are places for them to seek help, like the Trevor Project 1-866-4U-Trevor (1-866-488-7386). So, if you are in need of help or know someone who is, please realize you have places to turn. And to everyone else, you never know when you might be someone’s lifeguard.
Visalia has seen growth within our LGBT+ community this year. There are more active groups, activities and events happening in our area. From dinners, dances, meetings, social gatherings, to softball and more! If you get involved, you will find that there is almost always something going on.
Gay Central Valley, our main organization, has also come a long way this year. We will actually be opening up our first office in less than a week. This office will serve as our headquarters as well as a meeting space for local groups to utilize and the start of an LGBTQI community center. More to come on this soon!
So, here’s to a new year. One that I hope brings about more awareness, compassion and justice for our causes. I hope our local community will continue to grow and strengthen. I ask you all to get involved more and take advantage of what is offered. But most of all, I want you to know that I appreciate your support, I value your friendships and I will continue to do what I can to make Visalia a better place for all the LGBTQI community. As always, I welcome your comments, suggestions or rants. If you are not already on our mailing list you can join it HERE.
With hopes of more equality and less tragedy in 2011, I wish you all a very safe and happy New Year!