San Diego, CA-Family Pride Coalition, a national advocacy organization serving LGBT parents and their families has announced their receipt of $60,000 from the David Bohnett Foundation in 2001. The foundation had committed $50,000 in February of this year and has recently topped it off with a $10,000 gift to welcome and celebrate Family Pride's new Executive Director, Aimee Gelnaw. In addition, the foundation has made a multi-year $100,000 commitment through 2004. “It is through the extraordinary vision and passion of individuals like David Bohnett that so much of our work becomes possible.” stated Gelnaw, “This generous contribution will enable us to expand upon the level of service that people have come to expect from Family Pride Coalition while having direct impact on the well-being of our families through building our grassroots Advocacy Training Program.”
“I am extremely honored to announce this latest round of grants,” said David Bohnett, “the mission of this foundation, to change society through social activism, is alive and well and embodied in each of our deserving recipients.” Mr. Bohnett's Foundation has provided annual contributions to Family Pride Coalition for its Advocacy Department, since the department's creation in 1999.
Among other achievements, Family Pride's Advocacy Department recently released the “Tool Kit for a Family Lobby Day,” a joint publication with PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and COLAGE (Children of Lesbians and Gays Everywhere). The department has also worked to gain positive media exposure around LGBT parenting and family issues. Notably, Family Pride had at least 15 media hits last month-four of them national television interviews.
This year's increased contribution will enable the department to launch its Advocacy Training Program with Lobby Day Trainings in Ohio and Pennsylvania this fall. Next Spring the program will expand to sponsor non-partisan Electoral Trainings in North Carolina and Florida.
“I am very pleased about the potential positive impact these training opportunities can have at the grassroots level,” stated Bohnett. He continued by saying, “Informing and empowering LGBT families about the choices available to them through the democratic process and helping them use their voices to achieve sound policies can go a long way in gaining equal civil rights for us all.” Gelnaw echoed, “Our families are facing an escalation of homophobic attacks in state legislatures across this country, we feel an obligation to give our families the tools they need to protect themselves and make positive gains. David Bohnett's visionary generosity makes it possible for us to more broadly accomplish these goals.”
In addition to advocacy training, Family Pride provides support to its nearly two hundred parenting groups in the United States and around the world as well as opportunities to individual families. Family Pride is scheduled to begin online chat groups on a variety of topics of interest to LGBT parents and their families in September of this year and will continue to host the perennial favorite: annual Family Weeks. This year's Family Weeks are scheduled for Saugatuck, Michigan July 14-20, and Provincetown, Massachusetts August 4-10th. See: www.familypride.org for more information or call 619-296-0199.