After months of planning and fundraising, The Long Island GLBT Network opened its doors to The Hamptons GLTBT Center in Sag Harbor on August 10, 2013. The East End community celebrated the grand opening with Edie Windsor, victor in the landmark case overturning the Defense of Marriage Act, and welcomed over 500 guests to share her excitement in the Center’s creation.
Housed within the well-known historic Old Whaler’s Church, the Hamptons GLBT Center has become a beacon of light and home and safe space for the GLBT community of the East End – especially for youth. Having a community center that serves the GLBT youth and adults of the East End was always a goal for the Network, but it was the suicide of 16-year-old David Hernandez Barros that accelerated their efforts.
During the past 12 months, The Network and its organizations have been able to expand operating hours to five days a week, establish programs for youth through daily drop-in and Youth Groups, create special spring break and summer vacation programs for youth, provide HIV and STD testing and counseling services, establish groups for Spanish speaking GLBT people, establish groups for the transgender community, and expand partnerships with East End schools and conduct anti-bullying presentations in addition to help create more gay-straight alliance clubs.
All of these accomplishments were made possible with the generosity of The Calamus Foundation and the Jenjo Foundation in addition to the help and support from The Hamptons GLBT Center Advisory Committee.
The Network looks to continue expanding its programs and services for the East End GLBT community to make sure situations such as David Hernandez Barros’ never happen again.
The Hamptons GLBT Center
44 Union Street
Sag Harbor, NY 11963