June is LGBTQ+ Pride Month and is honored and celebrated by organizations within the community to promote equality and increased visibility around the globe. Whether you are part of the community or an ally, there are several ways you can participate in the movement in your own way. Here are some ideas.
Understand the History
The first way to honor the LGBTQ+ movement is to understand its origin. The 1969 Stonewall Riots were the catalyst for the those within the community across the nation to fight for equal rights. There are books such as “Stonewall” by David Carter, “The Stonewall Riots: The Fight for LGBT Rights” by Tristan Poehlmann, and “What Was Stonewall” by Nico Medina that offer insight into the movement’s beginning. Documentaries like “Stonewall: Where Pride Began” and “Before Stonewall: The Making of a Gay and Lesbian Community” that provide helpful information, as well.
Educate yourself and others on what it means to be an LGBTQ+ ally. There are many great resources available online by organizations such as Human Rights Campaign, GLAAD and GLSEN. Understanding biases, intervening when witnessing discrimination and use of inclusive language/proper pronouns helps build upon intended allyship.
Volunteer with or Donate to LGBTQ+ Organizations
Find a non-profit that impresses you with its work and figure out a way you can help. The Human Rights Campaign, LGBTQ Victory Fund, National Center for Transgender Equality, GLSEN, and The Trevor Project are notable national level organizations with a history of standing for those within the LGBTQ+ community. Or find one with a local or regional focus in your community.
If volunteering is not an option, donations help non-profits fund their work. Find a cause that you believe in either with a national organization or a local chapter and send a donation. Most charities make donating as easy as clicking on a button on their website.
Support Legislative Change
Take time to stay on top of both pro and anti-legislative bills and rally for or against them. Send emails to your state representative and sign petitions that strengthen and support the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. Encourage your like-minded friends to do the same. Involve your children to help them embrace the importance of using their voices to make the world a better place.
Attend an Event
There are in person and virtual events scheduled all over the world. Go to one or more, and while knowing your participation makes you part of the solution for the community.
Recognize It on Social Media
Wield your social media profiles as weapons for justice and change. Give your profile picture a frame supporting Pride Month and use a pride-positive background image. Post helpful and encouraging posts during the month with Pride-positive hashtags. If you attended an event, be sure to snap some pictures to post on social media so you can help broaden the cause’s reach.
Wear Your Support
Shop for some fun and colorful rainbow gear you can use to support the movement all month. T-shirts with rainbows and a pro-Pride message are practical and fun. There are also tons of choices with accessories like earrings, bracelets, hair ties, and belts. Purchase a rainbow backpack or a pair of tennis shoes to show your acknowledgement of the month, or even a pin that can be worn every day. If you’re hitting the beach in June, find a rainbow beach towel or bag to take along on your journey. Folks in the LGBTQ+ community will be able to easily recognize you as an ally.