LGBTQ+ advocate: ‘It’s okay to be who they are’

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — June is Pride Month!

Friday, News10NBC’s Bekka Fifield went out to learn what kind of resources we have in Rochester for our LGBTQ+ young people.

Rochester has a number of people that want to help our LGBTQ+ kids and teens in any way they can.

“I, myself am a case manager and outreach worker. So they can come to me with anything that’s more confidential or anything that they want to talk about that’s on the case management aspect of things,” LGBTQ+ Outreach Specialist Korry Jackson said.

Rochester’s Center for Youth has a program called True Colors — similar to Q+ — that Jackson says is a safe space for all ages and all identities.

“We do activities with them. Whether it be things like Pride Fest and the activities that are associated with that. Or if it’s just here and we’re watching a trans-inclusive movie and we’re just learning about each other and other topics,” Jackson said.

The center also works with Out Alliance — Rochester’s oldest LGBTQ+ resource center.

Out Alliance also houses an inclusive library.

“New York State’s largest collection of community center LGBTQ+ library materials with over 10,000 items — CDs, DVDs, Biographies, Fiction, Young Adult. It’s really a gem here in Rochester,” Volunteer with the Out Alliance Andrew Moran said.

Moran says this library is important because it is preserving books that have been banned in areas across the U.S.

“That’s so incredibly important for our youth to know that it’s okay to be who they are no matter what their identity is — to feel supported,” Moran said.

Both agencies are readily available to help educate and support LGBTQ+ youth.

If you are looking to contact or become involved in the Center for Youth, you can find their website here or you can call them at (585)473-2464.