Page 16 - Open Sky Annual Report 2020
P. 16

  Coping, Responding and Reimagining
Safe Homes Celebrates 25 Years of Serving LGBTQIA+ Youth With Virtual Gala
The Safe Homes program celebrated 25 years of serving LGBTQIA+ youth with a Virtual Gala and People of Courage Awards on April 9, 2021, from 6-7pm. The event featured live hosts – City Manager Ed Augustus and Heard Strategy and Storytelling owner Jake Messier, as well as a number of awardees, dignitaries, staff and alumni of the program.
People of Courage Awardees included: Sharon McQueen (Public Service Award), Adam Stone (Young Adult Award), Unum Group (Corporate Award), Dr. Angela Sheble (Educator and Influencer Award) and Redemption Rock Brewery (Social Justice Advocacy and Action Award).
In addition, three organizations were honored with Partnership Awards – ZIA Young Adult Access Center, Ginkgo Bioworks, and Worcester Together (United Way of Central Mass and Greater Worcester Community Foundation).
As the Presenting Sponsor of the 2021 Safe Homes Gala and People of Courage Awards, Hanover Insurance Group Foundation continued to demonstrate their support of LGBTQIA+ youth in Central Mass.
The Hanover Insurance Group was recently recognized as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQIA+ Equality by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation for the fourth consecutive year.
Chris Collins of Mirick O’Connell emceed the Fund-A-Need portion of the event and Revelation Productions provided professional services and a sponsorship for the event.
Safe Homes provides support, leadership development, education, food, connections to housing, and free behavioral health counseling for youth ages 14 to 23. The program is based in Worcester, and is expanding this year to the Fitchburg, Leominster, Gardner area with support from partners Fitchburg State University and LUK, Inc. See related story about Safe Homes North.
 15 Open Sky Community Services Annual Report 2020
Jake Messier and Ed Augustus host the Safe Homes Gala Event

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