The resistance to our oppression based on the spectrum of our sexual orientations and gender identities has taken on many forms over the years. Resistance has taken on the form of holding hands in the daylight with the person whom we love, demanding our right to serve openly in the military and legally marry, protesting in the streets, fighting police brutality, and so much more. In the late 80’s and early 90’s, Pride committee members worked diligently to re-envision a model of Pride that went from ad-hoc committees each year to a professional organization that was able to turn a profit from our events and then use those funds to reinvest in our community. Folks like Christine Kehoe, Neil Good, Tim Williams, Barbra Blake, Joseph Mayer, and more wanted to ensure that the legacy of Pride was one that helps to build the capacity of our community beyond the weekend events. Those pioneers of our movement knew that the resistance could look like philanthropy.
It is an honor and a privilege to carry on their legacy; resistance now includes 57 LGBTQ-serving nonprofit community partners, 87 sponsors, 5,600 volunteer shifts, 22,000 volunteers hours, 45,000 Festival attendees, and 250,000 Parade attendees coming together to make Pride possible. Each and every one of you is and has been vital in building upon that initial groundwork, strengthening our organization, and, in turn, our community.
This year’s unprecedented attendance and financial success means that we are beyond overjoyed to be giving out over $170,000 to LGBTQ-serving organizations! When looking at our in-kind donations to LGBTQ-serving organizations (including free room rentals, free tickets for HIV testing, and other product and equipment donations) that number jumps to over $223,000.
Investing your time, talent, and treasure with us means that you are continuing that act of resistance; San Diego Pride has become the most philanthropic Pride organization in the world, having given out more than 2.7 million dollars since 1994. We can’t thank you enough for being a part of our Pride Family and hope that you will be with us in 2019 as we celebrate Stonewall 50: A Legacy of Liberation.