Later this spring, GALAEI, the only organization for Philly (and all of Pennsylvania)’s gay and lesbian Latino community, will move from its digs on Chestnut Street in the Gayborhood to a new space in North Philadelphia. The new location was the former home of the Norris Square Civic Association and, according to Executive Director Elicia Gonzales, it will situate them in an area that will allow them to reach more of the nonprofit’s constituents.
It’s your last chance to purchase early bird tickets for this year’s Philadelphia SEXx Interactive Conference, which runs May 7 through 10. The event, which is a collaboration between GALAEI, Wicked Gay Ways, Sex with Timaree, Katelyn Regan, and Freedom G Photography, has drastically-reduced admission costs if you purchase one of the early bird passes. Read more »
1700 Market Street, 18th Floor
AccessMatters, which works to promote sexual health resources in Philadelphia’s underserved communities, maintains an LGBT health resource center called SafeGuards.
The Attic Youth Center
255 South 16th Street
The Attic creates opportunities for LGBTQ youth to develop into healthy, independent, civic-minded adults. The Attic offers myriad wellness benefits—from meditation classes and safe-sex workshops to being a resource for finding out about other LGBT-specific health and wellness organizations in Philadelphia.
Gay and Lesbian Latino AIDS Education Initiative (GALAEI)
1207 Chestnut Street
GALAEI is unwavering in its commitment to promote queer Latin@ social justice in the Philadelphia area. It’s outreach projects include everything from promoting sexual health in the Philadelphia Latin@ community to stumping for equal rights.
Linda Creed: Rainbow Circle
P.O. Box 40607
Linda Creed’s Rainbow Circle provides breast health information for lesbians, bisexual women, and transgender persons.
ACLU of Pennsylvania
P.O. Box 40008
ACLU of Pennsylvania works to secure total rights for LGBT people by working to defend and expand the individual rights and personal freedoms afforded to us all by the state and federal constitutions and the Bill of Rights.
Bread & Roses Community Fund
1315 Walnut Street
Bread & Roses provides grants and technical assistance to communities in the Philadelphia region that are taking collective action to bring about racial and economic justice. Bread and Roses Fund offer scholarships for Philadelphia LGBT students, giving young minds the opportunity to expand their education.
In December, we reported on the controversy surrounding the crowning of a white male at this year’s Mr. SEXO competition, a self-proclaimed search for a “gay/queer Latino who is the epitome of sexy,” co-sponsored by GALAEI and PhillyGayCalendar. An open letter from The Gran Varones, which essentially slammed the competition, calling it “a reduction and objectification of brown bodies in a community that does not even acknowledge us as whole people,” added quite a bit of fuel to the fire as to why the contest seemed to have gone astray. Read more »
Last week I told you about the 2015 Mr. SEXO winner, Marcous Marchese, who was crowned (or, err, sashed) at Woody’s on Thursday night. I was a little surprised by the news, considering Marchese is white and the competition was billed as a search for a “gay/queer Latino who is the epitome of sexy.”
The event, now in its second year, is sponsored by PhillyGayCalendar and Philly queer Latin social justice organization GALAEI, so I reached out to Executive Director Elicia Gonzales to see why a white dude took the prize. She told me that, “GALAEI is a queer Latin@ social justice organization. Latinadad is not who we serve but how we serve, so we treat everyone like familia. And we feel the new Mr. SEXO embodies this.”
When I shared the post on Facebook, however, a few readers voiced their opinions about the win. One commenter said, “Not to be rude … but why was a white guy even allowed to enter this competition designed specifically for the Queer Latino community? I’m confused … ”
Last night, Philly queer Latin social justice organization GALAEI and PhillyGayCalendar hosted the 2015 Mr. SEXO competition at Woody’s. The contest, now in its second year, seeks to find men in Philly who use their sexuality in positive ways—like promoting body-positivity and safe-sex.
There were 10 contestants taking part. They each had a moment to share their talent with the audience, and of course strip down to their skivvies. Last year’s winner, Syfr Gavriel, also did a dance number, and gave the hopefuls tips on how to represent the Mr. SEXO title.
In the end the winner was Marcous Marchese, who you may recognize as a bartender at The Raven. He was also one of PhillyGayCalendar’s 2014 Boys of Summer lifeguards. I tried reaching out to Marchese for a statement, but have yet to hear from him. I’m told that he is currently working on getting his PhD in social psychology in the hopes of becoming a professor. When asked why she thought he won, GALAEI Executive Director Elicia Gonzales told me that “he won over the crowd with his nice smile, and his commitment to spreading sex-positivity throughout the LGBT community and volunteering with GALAEI—and his dance moves certainly helped too.”
“It’s Philly’s LGBTQ youth that are leading the change,” says 17-year-old Bella, a high school student from Kensington. She, along with a panel of other emerging leaders in the Philadelphia LGBTQ community, kicked off this week’s Kimmel Center It Gets Better Project residency, and if last evening’s performances and discussions were any indication, Bella (and Whitney) were right: Children really are our future.
The afternoon featured three distinct opportunities for local youth to participate in community building and performance. First, students from the Kimmel Center’s Show Stoppers and Wolf Performing Arts Center teamed up to film an outdoor performance of Sara Bareilles’s “Brave,” which will be screened at Saturday’s It Gets Better Project concert. Led by touring actors Mario Mosley and Tyler Houston, the triple threats danced their way down a picturesque Philly block, causing lots of local commuters to pause for the show.
Every Friday Delaware Valley Legacy Fund (DVLF) Executive Director Samantha Giusti introduces you to a local LGBT non-profit in Philadelphia. This week, the Gay and Lesbian Latino AIDS Education Initiative more affectionately known as GALAEI. (Pronounced “gal-āy.”)
Who are you? Elicia Gonzales, executive director of GALAEI. We are a queer Latin@ social justice organization. “Queer” acknowledges and represents the mosaic of sexual and gender identities within our communities. “Latin@” represents the multiracial, multicultural experience of Latinidad. GALAEI embodies the common history of resistance and resilience of Latin@ and queer people. We are unwavering in our commitment to the advancement de nuestra familia through leadership and economic development, sexual empowerment, and grassroots organizing.
When was GALAEI founded? GALAEI was founded in 1989 by David Acosta and other queer, Latin@ activists to respond to the lack of support and resources for our Queer Latin@ community during the HIV epidemic.
It was a crisp autumn morning in Philadelphia, but thousands turned out for Sunday’s 28th annual AIDS Walk Philly. The event—which is put together by a dozen local nonprofits, including the Mazzoni Center, Action AIDS, and The Attic Youth Center—is a 5K walk that raises funds for HIV/AIDS organizations in Philadelphia. As always, gay Philly came out in full force for the cause. I’ve rounded up some photos of all the troopers below:
#whyiwalk #team0005 #friendsforlife