Pride Month in Rural Communities: How to Celebrate and find Resources and Support

Pride Flag

Every year, the month of June is celebrated nationally as Pride Month. For those living in rural communities, celebrating *LGBTQIA+ Pride Month can be a bit of a challenge as the larger events are normally reserved for cities like Atlanta, Washington, D.C. and New York.

In this post, we’ll describe Pride Month, share some ways to get involved with events taking place around Nassau County and Northeast Florida and provide a host of local and national resources that can benefit members of the LGBTQIA+ community year-round.

What is Pride Month?

“The majority of Pride events are held in June to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion in New York City on June 28, 1969, which most historians consider to be the birth of the modern LGBT movement. At the time, police raids on bars catering to LGBT patrons were common, but that night, the patrons of the Stonewall Inn fought back. While historical accounts of the night vary, the violent response ignited a national firestorm of activism that brought new visibility to the struggle for LGBT equality. June is unofficially recognized as Pride Month by the LGBT community, and many Pride events still occur on the last Sunday in June to commemorate the anniversary of Stonewall. In some places Pride events stretch out over a weekend or an entire week, while in other areas, Pride events occur at different times of the year altogether.”

Pride Month Resource Kit for Journalists.” GLAAD, 12 Jan. 2017, www.glaad.org/publications/pridekit

2021 Local Pride Celebrations

Fernandina Beach Pride

Fernandina Beach Pride has moved its Parade and Festival to October 23rd 2021. The organization was formed in 2019 to acknowledge and celebrate the LGBTQ+ community in Fernandina Beach, FL. They host smaller events throughout the year. You can stay up to date by visiting their website and following them on Facebook.

River City Pride

River City Pride will be hosting its parade and festival in Jacksonville, FL in October 2021. They started in 2010 and were incorporated as a nonprofit organization in 2017. You can stay up to date with their events by visiting their website and following them on Facebook.

LGBTQIA+ Local Resources

  • JASMYN: JASMYN is a non-profit youth services organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-23, in Jacksonville, Florida.
  • PFLAG OF JACKSONVILLE: Welcome to the Jacksonville Florida chapter of PFLAG. We are the local branch of a nationwide organization that reaches out to people from every walk of life in hopes that we can change someone’s life for the better. Our goal is to provide the First Coast Community with support, education, advocacy, and understanding of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons. We work within the community and help by providing monthly meetings, scholarship programs, educational materials, and more.
  • NORTHEAST FLORIDA AIDS NETWORK: Northeast Florida AIDS Network provides compassionate leadership, services, and advocacy in meeting the prevention, health, spiritual, and social needs of individuals, families, and communities.
  • PARTNERSHIP FOR CHILD HEALTH: Engaging in public policy that responds to the critical and priority needs of children and families is necessary to achieve their optimal health and wellbeing. Throughout the years, The Partnership’s public policy position has been grounded in the principles of child rights and health equity.
  • JACKSONVILLE COALITION FOR EQUALITY: The Jacksonville Coalition for Equality is a group of concerned citizens committed to securing passage of an updated Human Rights Ordinance in Jacksonville. The updated ordinance needs to include protections for sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression in employment, housing, and public accommodations. We operate with transparency, mutual respect, and hard work.
  • UNF – LGBTQ RESOURCE CENTER: The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Resource Center’s mission is to provide valuable education and resources for the entire campus community with a commitment to advocacy, equality, respect, and support for LGBT students, faculty, and staff.
  • JAX YOUTH EQUALITY: JAX YOUTH EQUALITY is a coalition providing medical and mental health resources, youth and family information, awareness, advocacy, safe places, community education, school initiatives, and more to advance the health and well-being of all children and youth in Jacksonville.

LGBTQIA+ National Resources

  • Ackerman Institute for the Family/Gender & Family Project: The Gender & Family Project (GFP) empowers youth, families, and communities by providing gender affirmative services, training and research. GFP promotes gender inclusivity as a form of social justice in all the systems involved in the life of the family. GFP is directed by Jean Malpas, LMHC, LMFT, who has trained and published nationally and internationally on issues of gender and sexuality.
  • LGBTQIA+ Friendly Drug and Alcohol Treatment Centers: Many factors go into proper addiction treatment. LGBTQ-friendly drug and alcohol treatment centers consider the additional stigma and negativity many LGBTQs faces to provide more comprehensive treatment.
  • Worthy Mentoring: Worthy Mentoring is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to connecting mentors and mentees in the LGBTQ+ Community for personal guidance, professional advice, support, and friendship. Many of our mentees sign up for advice on how to come out to family and friends, for help reconciling their faith with their sexuality or gender identity, for guidance on navigating the workplace as a queer person, or just to talk to someone like them. The Worthy App is available now on all iOS devices for users 18+.
  • Q Chat Space: Q Chat Space provides online discussion groups for LGBTQ+ teens ages 13 to 19. It is not a forum. It is live chat-based; there is no video or audio. Everyone is chatting during the same pre-scheduled time. Conversations are facilitated by experienced staff who work at LGBTQ+ centers around the country. Q Chat Space facilitators are not mental health professionals.
  • TrevorChat: Confidential online instant messaging with a Trevor counselor, available 24/7. The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25.
  • TrevorText: Text START to 678-678. Confidential text messaging with a Trevor counselor, available 24/7/365. The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25.
  • LGBT National Help Center: The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) National Help Center, founded in 1996, is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization that provides vital peer support, community connections, and resource information to people with questions regarding sexual orientation and/or gender identity.

LGBTQIA+ Emergency / Crisis Support

  • TrevorLifeline: 1-866-488-7376. TrevorLifeline is a crisis intervention and suicide prevention phone service available 24/7/365. The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25.

LGBTQIA+ Movies / TV Shows / Blogs / Books

  • Movies: Click here to see a list of 50 LGBTQ movies.
  • TV Shows: Click here to see a list of 54 LGBTQ+ shows on Netflix.
  • Blogs: Click here to see a list of 13 LGBTQ+ blogs.
  • Books: Click here to see a list of 50 LGBT books.

*LGBTQIA+ = Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and/or Questioning, Intersex, and Asexual/or Ally + ‘non-cisgender and non-straight identities which are not included in the acronym’.

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