Hetrick-Martin Institute Battered By Sandy, But Not Broken

Hurricane Sandy hit New York right in the middle of gala season, when LGBT nonprofits hold benefits in hope of getting some last-minute charitable donations before the financial year ends.

The result was that a number of events had to be moved, or canceled outright. (Even the Out 100 had to be pushed to next Thursday). One of our favorite local not-for-profits, the Hetrick-Martin Institute (HMI), had to pull the plug on their 2012 Emery Awards, planned for October 29.

In addition, HMI—the nation’s oldest and largest homeless LGBT youth organization—was without power and had to suspend basic services, including providing food and clothing. “As soon as the electricity was restored and we opened our doors, it was clear that these young people had suffered enormously,” said HMI director Thomas Krever. “Many of the services they usually rely on were halted or impaired by the storm, and the services that are available are experiencing unprecedented demand… We’ve seen an incredible amount of anxiety, depression and deep feelings of isolation in these young people.”Dustin-Lance-Black-suit

Fortunately, HMI is announcing the Emerys have been rescheduled to December 11 at the Altman Building in Chelsea. It will be a scaled-back affair, but Dustin Lance Black is expected to still be on hand to receive an award, as will Bully director Lee Hirsch, and Time Warner Inc., a supporter of HMI and the Harvey Milk School for more than a decade.

“We’re thrilled that our corporate sponsors, major donors and celebrity supporters are rallying around this [new] event to help us make it a reality,” says Krever, who says tickets from the original October 29 date will be honored.

Other avenues of relief for at-risk queer kids also suffered in Sandy’s wake: The Ali Forney Center’s drop-in center was rendered uninhabitable, and the organization has had to take up borrowed room in the LGBT Community Center.

The 2012 Emery Awards will be held 8-11pm on December 11t at the Altman Building. To help with HMI’s Super Storm Sandy Relief Fund, click here

Tickets from the original October 29th date will be honored for the rescheduled December 11th event. If you would like support HMI and its Super Storm Sandy Relief Fund established to serve the thousands of LGBTQ youth relying upon its lifesaving programs please donate online at