WINDY CITY TIMES
||Center on Halsted's South Side location holds open house
by Vern Hester
This article shared 1776 times since Sat Aug 27, 2022
On Aug. 25, the new Center on Halsted's South Side site, at 6323 S. Cottage Grove Ave., opened its doors for an open house to welcome community members and potential partners.
The hub, which is in a storefront of the historic Strand Hotel, is rented by Center on Halsted and is aimed at providing HIV outreach and testing as well as community services in one of the most underserved sections on the South Side. The hub has already partnered with five LGBTQ+ organizations with a strategy to reduce the transmission of HIV in this area, which has seen the highest rate of new infections, according to Chicago's 2020 HIV surveillance report. Talks with other LGBTQ+ partners are ongoing, as are plans for training programs and the probability of hosting community activities in the future.
Although the Center on Halsted pays the rent, this hub is managed and run by South Side residents who are familiar with the needs of the local population. Center on Halsted Executive Director Modesto "Tico" Valle told the Chicago Sun-Times, "It's important for us that, in places, we need to lead ... or we need to follow, and here we follow."
Taskforce Community Services Executive Director Chris Balthazar added, "It's about making sure that the programs that they offer meet the needs of the folks that live in that community and that it reaches them in a way that fits with their culture."
Center on Cottage Grove Managing Director Betty Adkins said that there are five organizations that have partnered with the hub, with a host of ongoing discussions happening with other groups. Each of the participating partners is aimed at a different demographic in the LGBTQ community, including ALMA Chicago, for the Latinx community; Affinity Community Services, for Black women; TaskForce, for young adults and the trans community; TPAN, for older adults; and the Chicago Black Gay Men's Caucus, for Black men.
The Caucus has been holding meetings at the Center since June as Balthazar is in continuing talks with Adkins on having community activities like mini-drag balls. The Center also features an array of art by Black queer artists.
One volunteer who was especially happy to see this new center open was Adkins' 80-year-old mother, Barbara. She said, "You have no idea how happy this makes me. When I was growing up, everyone was in the closet. I'm so glad to see this change in this big city. When I saw the Pride Parade this year, I felt sad for the many people I've known who couldn't do this."
This article shared 1776 times since Sat Aug 27, 2022
| ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE|
|HRC on end of Mpox Public Health Emergency: Today we enter a new phase in a continuing fight |
--From a press release - WASHINGTON Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) — the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization — marked the end of the Mpox Public ...
|SAVOR Le Petit Chef: A singular, (literally) animated experience |
There are experiences and then there are EXPERIENCES. If you're familiar with those recent Immersive Van Gogh and Kahlo events, imagine that transferred to a table setting and you have an idea of what's involved with ...
|WORLD Pope Francis, non-binary minor, athlete dies at 35, Taiwan|
Pope Francis made headlines when he told the Associated Press on Jan. 24 that "being homosexual is not a crime," although he also described being gay as sinful, Gay City News noted. The pontiff called on ...
|Equality Illinois responds to violence, murder of Black and Brown trans people on the south side|
--From a press release - Statement by Myles Brady Davis, Director of Communications at Equality Illinois, the state's civil rights organization for LGBTQ+ people, regarding the violences and murders of Black and Brown trans people on the south side of Chicago: ...
|NATIONAL Calif. bills, DeSantis, HIV vaccine, Meta, college items|
Buried within the bills California legislators filed after Gov. Gavin Newsom released his budget proposal for the 2023-2024 fiscal year is a line seeking to retrieve $13 million back from the state's Transgender Wellness and Equity ...
|TPAN announces merger with Vivent Health |
Local HIV/AIDS organization TPAN announced Jan. 19 that it would be merging with Milwaukee-based Vivent Health. The merger is expected to be finalized by March 1, according to both organizations. Vivent Health, so named in 2019, ...
|Theater Review: tick, tick...BOOM!|
One of the wonders of live theater is that old works can be revived and reinterpreted to respond to changes in culture and society. Often a new directorial approach can make tried-and-true material feel fresh and ...
|One in five older LGBT adults experienced poverty during the COVID-19 pandemic|
--From a press release - A new report from the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law found that during the COVID-19 pandemic LGBT adults aged 50 and older were more likely to have household incomes below the federal poverty level ...
|GLAAD announces nominees for 34th Annual GLAAD Media Awards|
--From a press release. Video below - Jan. 18, 2023 - GLAAD, the world's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, today announced the nominees for the 34th Annual GLAAD Media Awards. ...
|Asians and Friends holding Chinese New Year dinner on Feb. 4|
In a throwback to the days of Hugh Hefner, Asians and Friends Chicago (AFC) will host a Playboy and Playgirl "Bunny"-themed dinner celebrating the Year of the Rabbit, bringing together members of the LGBTQ+ community to ...
|Windy City Gay Chorus, Windy City Treble Quire begin search for artistic directors|
--From a press release - The Board of Directors for Windy City Performing Arts has started their search for two Artistic Directors for the organization's choruses. Applications are now being accepted in hopes to fill these positions prior to the 2023-2024 season. ...
|NATIONAL Asylum-seekers, equality updates, cannabis, HIV and COVID|
Advocacy groups that specifically work with LGBTQI+ asylum-seekers and migrants criticized the Biden administration's expansion of the use of "expedited removal" of Cubans, Nicaraguans, Haitians and Venezuelans who enter the ...
|Black LGBTQ+ film festival among Chicago NEA grant recipients|
The Black Alphabet Film Festivalthe world's oldest Black LGBTQ+-focused event of its kindwas part of the first round of grant recipients from the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA), receiving $20,000. In a press release, Black ...
|Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame calls for nominations|
--From a news release - The Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame has announced a call for nominations for the 2023 Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame. Those wishing to may nominate individuals, organizations, businesses, or "Friends of the Community," up until April ...
|WORLD Murder suspect arrested, Israeli official, conversion therapy, couple's win|
Kenyan authorities arrested a suspect in the death of fashion designer/LGBTQ+-rights activist Edwin Chiloba after his body was found dumped in a metal box by the roadside near the town of Eldoret, according to CNN. Last ...