LGBT ELDERS OF COLOR HISTORY
There is limited data available on LGBT older adults, and even less for LGBT older adults of color, making this population more likely to be under represented and underserved. Throughout 2012/2013 we conducted focus groups and attended community events to identify effective outreach for engaging LGBT older adults of color. We solicited an outreach team of LGBT community stakeholders of color in the fall of 2013 and called ourselves “LGBT Elders of Color”. In February 2013 for Black History Month, an awareness raising social event was launched. It was themed “Flashback Sunday”, harkening back to life in the days when house parties and a few local gay bars were the only outlets for self-expression. We expected about 25-30 people to attend but nearly 100 people showed up. It was an enormous success by any measure and sited by many as “long overdue”. With the support of small grants and private donations, LGBT Elders of Color has held more than 16 Flashback Sunday events with a focus on social engagement, intergenerational discussions and information forums for healthy aging and resources.
CONNECTING LGBT ELDERS OF COLOR
The mission of LGBT Elders of Color is to conduct outreach to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender older adults of color for the purpose of building community through social engagement events, creative programming and providing needed resources for health care and aging services.
LGBT Elders of Color conducts outreach to isolated lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender older adults of color, to build community through social engagement events, creative programs, and provide necessary resources for health care and aging services. Particular emphasis is on locating and supporting this population. Community events are both social and programmatic in nature. The social component enables LGBT older adults of color to meet new people and engage with a diverse and inter-generational group of peers. The programmatic component connects this group to important information about health care and elder service resources.