WUSA9's Lorenzo Hall
Safe Space NOVA Fundraiser Brunch
Safe Space NOVA, a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization which services the Northern Virginia area, is hosting its first ever Brunch Fundraiser. It will be held on September 14 from 12:00 to 4:00 PM at The Garden which is located at 5380 Eisenhower Avenue (Suite C) in Alexandria, Virginia. The purpose for this event is multifaceted. Safe Space NOVA wants to educate the community on the issues LGBT+ youth face, tell the story of why and how the organization exists, and ask for support to continue programming.
First, one of the most important goals of this event is to bring awareness to the intolerance the LGBT+ youth experience in this troubling socioeconomic and political climate. Did you know that 10% of students who identify as LGBT+ were threatened or injured with a weapon on school property? Or that 34% were bullied on school property? If you didn’t know that, you are not alone. Those stats come from the Center for Disease control in 2015 which surveys the state of physical and mental health of LGBT+ youth.
One approach to combat bullying and ridicule is to foster safe, accepting and supportive environment with other youth that are experiencing the same challenges along with adults who identify as LGBT. It is for that reason Safe Space NOVA was created. Founding Executive Director, Jordan L. Costen, realized that there was no place for LGBT+ youth who were feeling unloved and possibly rejected by society simply because of their gender identity or sexual orientation to feel safe. To that point he made a space for that to occur.
Safe Space NOVA was founded in 2016 with the goal of inviting LGBT+ youth across Northern Virginia to include the City of Alexandria, Arlington County, Fairfax County, Prince William County and Loudoun County, to participate in social activities that are inviting, fun and most of all safe. To date the organization has hosted numerous activities to include movie socials, laser tag, miniature golf and dances to name a few.