When Frank Selvaggi and Bill Shea watched a 60 Minutes segment on homeless kids in Florida, they decided to do something to help.
Their contribution? A $100,000 donation to the Ali Forney Center, the New York organization providing services to homeless LGBT youth. Their gift launched a million-dollar campaign raising money for more beds at the Center to keep gay kids and teens off the street at night.
Numbers from the Center estimate that there are about 1,600 homeless LGBT adolescents in New York City alone, but only 250 beds “designated for that population.” A disproportionate number of homeless teenagers are LGBT because many are rejected by their families.
“This is an urgent situation,” says Mr. Selvaggi, who serves on the boards of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Freedom to Marry. “We, as an LGBT community, need to do a better job of taking care of them.”
Such a noble move from an inspiring couple. I truly hope I’m able to do something similar one day; this will help a lot of young people who desperately need it.
The holidays are coming up and money’s tight for everyone, but you don’t have to donate thousands of dollars to make a difference to a teenager who needs a place to sleep. If you’ve got a little extra to spare, consider donating to the Ali Forney Center - every bit helps.