How to Be An Ally
and Support the LGBTQ
Community Year-Round

Pride month has come to an end, but YPOS and YP Impact believe in supporting the LGBTQ+ community year-round, not just for one month a year. To that end, we have put together a list of ways you can continue to support the LGBTQ+ community

Not belonging to the LGBTQ+ community myself I felt the best way I could write an article on ways people could support the LGBTQ+ community year-round was by reaching out to people who did belong to the community. So that is exactly what I did.

To me, there were the obvious things of supporting LGBTQ+ owned businesses, advocating for rights and vetting nonprofits, but was there more? Turns out yes, there was so much more. And that what mattered most to the community and what they are looking for year-round has more to do with perception and how they are treated.

“Treat the LGBTQ+ as people, not a classification or separate community.”

“View the LGBTQ+ community as courageous, rather than victims”

“Spread love, not hate.”

Advocate for rights for all people, not just the LGBTQ community. Make sure the things you advocate for include the LGBTQ+ community, but also include people no matter their race, sexual preference, religion, gender identity, age, etc. Everyone should have equal rights. Almost every person I spoke mentioned this.

“Listen to the stories those in the LGBTQ+ have to share and invite them to share their stories.” This could be one on one or at an event.

“Offer friendship.”

Support nonprofits and volunteer your time at those that are LGBTQ+ inclusive or serve the LGBTQ+ community. You can vet nonprofits by looking at their websites for mention of the LGBTQ+ community, doing research online using the name of the nonprofit and LGBTQ or Pride (You may find articles, how they spend their money, etc.) and reaching out to the local organizations like Chambers of Commerce, Young Professionals with Pride groups and so forth. A word of caution is not to rule a nonprofit out because they don’t support the LGBTQ community nationally, as they may be run by someone from the LGBTQ community locally, as is the case with at least two nonprofits in Seattle.

“Don’t make assumptions. If you don’t understand something about the LGBTQ+ community then ask open-ended questions. This invites sharing and honest, open communication.”

“Don’t stereotype the community.” One of the biggest stereotypes the community faces is that they are all about drugs, sex and alcohol, when in fact most are just seeking love and connection like anyone else.

Support LGBTQ Businesses. “If you support LGBTQ+ businesses don’t only support them because they are owned by the LGBTQ community though, rather because they have something of value to offer.” Some LGBTQ+ owned businesses and directories include:

Intentionalist: is an LGBTQ+ owned online guide to intentional spending that supports small businesses and diverse local communities. They make it easy for you to find local restaurants, bars, gyms, shops, and more owned by women, people of color, veterans, LGBTQ+, families, and differently abled people.

GSBA: is the largest LGBTQ+ and allied chamber of commerce in North America. They represent over 1,300 small business, corporate, and nonprofit members who share the values of promoting equality and diversity in the workplace.

Namasgay Summit: is the #1 event for LGBTQ personal and spiritual development. The Summit is a powerful and fun weekend for those wanting to manifest greater love, prosperity and joy into their lives.

Speak More Make More Summit: is a fun and powerful two-day event that will support you in leveraging your business through public speaking (even if you are introverted and shy). If you are a coach or holistic practitioner ready to share your message with a wider audience, want to attract new clients to your practice, or have an important message to share but struggle articulating yourself powerfully, this is the event for you. Learn a simple system to get paid well to speak.

Remember we can all make a difference and be allies to the LGBTQ+ community each and every day. How are you being an ally?

Special thanks to Frank Macri, Laura Clise and the other members of the LGBTQ+ community who contributed to this article but asked to remain anonymous.

Kara Wenrich

Kara Wenrich

Kara is a nonprofit consultant, the YP Impact Program Manager, runs Seattle Entrepreneurs and is on the board of Net Impact Seattle. When she is not working Kara can be found at concerts, volunteering, hiking, rafting, camping, traveling or off on one of life's many adventures.
Kara Wenrich