Niagara Pride recently secured grant funding from the M&T Charitable Foundation in order to help expand its GSA grants program. Additionally, it has partnered with GLYS of WNY to help maximize the impact these grants can have on local schools.
Under this partnership, GLYS will focus on providing macrolevel support via education and training to administrators and teachers on how to build structural change to support students; and to LGBTQ+ youth directly on LGBTQ+ issues, examining bias and prejudice, knowing LGBTQ+ history, development of inclusive programs, and advocating for LGBTQ+ rights. Niagara Pride will provide microlevel support, by making grants available to the student clubs themselves for projects to help them advocate for and create more affirming spaces by bringing in speakers, purchasing books, or other small-scale projects driven by students themselves.
A press release noted, “By pairing these two initiatives, they will be able to provide deeper intervention at the school level, creating more sustainable impact that training alone cannot meet.
“Niagara Pride offers grants to local GSAs (gay/straight alliances or gender/sexuality alliances), with the goal of providing these student organizations funding that is needed to improve the diversity and inclusion of schools. GLYS, through its youth training program, teaches LGBTQ+ youth critical advocacy and self-empowerment skills. Niagara Pride’s grants provide a direct method for students who have received GLYS’ training to utilize the skills taught, by affording them the opportunity to become agents of change in their school by developing and implementing DEI projects, using the funding they are awarded through our grant. The partnership creates a nexus between both programs, maximizing the benefits of the education they receive from GLYS and creating real-world possibilities to implement that knowledge at their level to foster change. Together, both programs strengthen the leadership and self-affirming skills LGBTQ+ youth need as they become future leaders in our community.”
For the 2023-24 academic year, Niagara Pride will offer grants to high school GSAs under two different grant programs:
√ Niagara County GSA grants program – Niagara Pride will offer up to eight $1,000 grants to GSAs in Niagara County
√ Rural WNY GSA grants program – Niagara Pride will offer up to eight $750 grants to GSAs in Alleghany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties
Applications are now available at https://forms.office.com/r/p49tCYfdpw. The deadline to submit an application is 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 31. Winners will be selected and notified via email and letter by Nov. 15.
Niagara Pride is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization serving LGBTQ+ individuals and families in Niagara County and WNY.
Niagara Pride will host a Pride pancake breakfast fundraiser from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 30. The cost is $10 for two pancakes, eggs, and sausage; or $15 for six Pride pancakes, eggs, and sausage. This event is cash only. A basket raffle will also be held during the event.
The event will be held at Niagara Pride’s offices inside St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 140 Rainbow Blvd., Niagara Falls.