GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) - Sometimes family is blood, other times family are the folks you meet along the way. As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, many LGBTQ+ individuals might not have a safe home to celebrate Thanksgiving in. That’s why Loving Beyond Understanding hosts their LGBTIQ+ Friendsgiving. So, people of all backgrounds can celebrate the holidays as themselves in a safe space.
Sunday’s Friendsgiving was all about acceptance. A Thanksgiving where pronouns are respected. A person’s gender identity or sexual orientation can safely be expressed. It’s all about creating a space where everyone in the room is open and welcoming to all.
At the First Congregational United Church of Christ, located across from Grand Junction High School, folks enjoyed an authentic thanksgiving meal. Complete with Turkey, Ham, Mac and Cheese, Rolls, and of course the workings for dessert.
Loving Beyond Understanding says they plan on opening a new LGBTQIA center in December. Where teens and young adults aged 16-23 can find support groups and drop in as they need or like. Networking with similar individuals and connecting them with resources.
At First Congregational UCC. Trans or gender non-conforming folks are welcome to visit the rainbow closet.
“If somebody is sort of in that exploration phase of not sharing what kind of clothing works for them, they might not be comfortable to go try on things at a big brand store.” said Andrea Williams, Admin and Program Coordinator for Loving Beyond Understanding, “They can come here to the rainbow closet and also have gender conforming gear. That might be binders. Things that allow them to feel comfortable in their body as they go into the world and quite frankly, want to feel love in the community,”.
LBU is also connected with the organization Transparent. A support program for parents of transgender teens and youth. Transparent answers questions for parents looking for the best way to support their kid and hold meetings for both parent and kid attendance.
If you’re interested in volunteering or getting involved in Loving Beyond Understanding’s programs, use the email address firstname.lastname@example.org. A website is currently being built for the organization.
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