Ways to Tap into the LGBTQ+ Community
Queer-affirming organizations need your support in Charlotte and are looking for your participation.
by Alyssa Lopez
If you haven’t already, dive into Charlotte’s LGBTQ+ scene and get involved with these local organizations to keep the community spirit high all year-round. Here are a few Queen City organizations and recreation-based leagues that you can get excited about.
Time Out Youth Center supports LGBTQ youth in the area by providing a safe space, offering inclusive programs and activities, and promoting acceptance and inclusion for the area’s LGBTQ youth, ages 11-20. The center offers an environment that is encouraging and respectful of the journey that each individual is on.
Founded in 2014, Stonewall Sports’ Charlotte branch offers bowling, kickball, cornhole, dodgeball, indoor and sand volleyball for both LGBTQ Charlotteans and allies alike. The organization has outposts in many cities, including Washington, D.C., Chicago and Philadelphia. Registration is now open for the summer 2021 season.
RAIN is a locally based organization that is known as one of the largest HIV nonprofits in the Carolinas providing direct client services. The organization integrates the knowledge and voices of those affected by HIV to plan and deliver their services. RAIN provides an array of services such as health insurance assistance, counseling services, support groups, HIV/STI testing and empowering positive youth.
If you’re a political junkie, consider joining MeckPAC’s efforts to expand and protect the rights of LGBTQ people in the region. MeckPAC is Mecklenburg County’s LGBTQ political action committee, and it regularly issues endorsements of candidates and lobbies area governing councils on legislation favorable to the gay and transgender communities.
As the largest LGBTQ professional/business organization in the region, the LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce serves as a connector of LGBTQ-owned businesses and professionals. CLGBTCC offers monthly opportunities for local professionals to develop their skills and enhance their education.
Transcend Charlotte aims to provide a space for trans and gender-expansive folks to live authentically and free from discrimination and oppression. Transcend provides free or low-cost mental health, social support and education services for transgender and gender-expansive communities. Services include counseling, case management, Xpression space and group support.
As the largest LGBTQ advocacy and political lobbyist group in North Carolina, Equality NC was created to advocate the rights of LGBTQ community members. The organization hosts programs that address anti-violence, racial justice, non-discrimination, youth protection and HIV/AIDS advocacy. Get involved with ENC by joining one of their regional chapter groups.
PFLAG Charlotte is one of over 400 chapters of PFLAG around the nation. The non-profit organization was created to provide support and awareness to families, allies and those within the LGBTQ+ community. PFLAG Charlotte offers peer support group meetings, one-to-one support, family connections events and educational programs.
If you have a passion for singing, consider being a part of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Charlotte. The organization is inclusive of all genders and sexual orientations and performs three ticketed concerts per season. GMCC also has a non-singing support section that assists the chorus with shows, music and literature distribution, usher arrangements, and many more.
Reel Out Charlotte is Charlotte’s annual LGBTQ film festival and a program of Charlotte Pride. The annual festival presents LGBTQ-themed short, documentary and feature-length films from local film artists. This year’s Reel Out Charlotte film festival will take place November 5-7, 2021. The deadline for submissions is August 27, 2021.
Known as the LGBTQIA and allies chorus of Charlotte, One Voice offers many opportunities to get involved with the organization. The chorus works to create understanding and acceptance of folks within the LGBTQIA community. One Voice offers community members the chance to get involved through their open singing auditions and volunteer opportunities.
Originally written by Jared Misner | Updates by Alyssa Lopez in May 2021