Recently, the admins of a fan-based Tumblr convention, Dashcon 2014, ran into some trouble. Allegedly, the staff of the hotel that was hosting their convention demanded to be paid 17,000 dollars, or else they would shut down Dashcon. The Dashcon admins responded by asking the community to raise 17,000 dollars by the end of the night — and so they did. The convention went on.
This has upset quite a few people, many of whom have pointed out that Tumblr users united to fundraise for a convention, but not to raise money for other causes. A lot of these posts have specifically referenced poverty, homelessness, and disadvantaged members of the queer community; in particular, many people have talked about homeless LGBTQ youth. Why couldn’t we have raised 17,000 dollars for them?
Well, we can. So let’s do it.
The Ali Forney Center in NYC is an organization for homeless LGBTQ youth that provides housing, food, showers, clothing, primary medical care, mental health care, HIV/STI screening and treatment, substance abuse support, street outreach, employment/education assistance programs, training for adult care providers, and more. They’ve been doing great work for about 12 years now, and though they were hit pretty hard by Hurricane Sandy a few years back (x), they’ve never stopped working to do everything they can to directly help the most vulnerable members of the queer community.
I’ve created an online fundraising page directly through the Ali Forney Center, so no sketchy private individuals will be handling donation money.
Let’s prove that we can come together for more than bad conventions and potato salad Kickstarters. Homeless LGBTQ youth deserve better than being used as props in arguments, so here’s our chance to show that we do care enough to raise money for people who desperately need support.
(Plus, if you donate, you can have an extra hour in the ball pit. We promise.)
Our goal is 17,000 dollars. Click here to visit the page and donate!
I might look into this place…