CENTER OF GRAVITY

UPDATED: LGBT Centers Help More Than 1.7 Million People Every Year

A new report provides vital, if incomplete, information about the nation’s LGBT community centers.

Conducted by Movement Advancement Project (MAP) and CenterLink, a community  advocacy group, the survey found that the centers served a total of 33,000 people a week—or 1.7 million folks a year.

Typically, visitors are of color, male, transgender, and lower-income.

Of the centers’ $49.6 million combined operating budget, 27% comes from federal grants, 12% from state grants and 7% from local grants—and it’s usually money earmarked for HIV/AIDS-related programming.

It’s not all rosy, though: 200 LGBT community centers were contacted but only 79 responded. Though the expenses of the ones that did respond represented 83% of the  combined expenses for all centers, that means that more than half didn’t have it together enough to reply. “The survey is a time commitment when you look at the breadth of the report,” MAP’s Naomi Goldberg told South Florida Gay News. “For centers that don’t have the budget to have full-time employees, it’s hard to find the time to complete the survey.” About 1 in 5 centers were run completely by volunteers.

How much do you use your local LGBT Community Center? Share in the comments section.

NOTE: An earlier version of this story suggested LGBT centers had a significant budget shortfall nationwide. This was based on incorrect reported information. We regret the error.

Source: MAP via South Florida Gay News