CHICAGO — The city is home to vibrant, thriving LGBTQ communities — and numerous groups dedicated to supporting those communities.
Block Club rounded up more than 15 organizations that provide health care, legal aid, housing, food and other resources to queer neighbors in need.
This list is not exhaustive. If you know of an organization or initiative that’s missing, email us at [email protected]
Groups that support LGBTQ Chicagoans
- Affinity 95 is a Black- and queer-led group that works to advance social justice within and for Black LGBTQ communities. It has a book club, hosts support groups and organizes events to provide information about wellness and resources to people in need. You can find volunteer opportunities and make a monetary donation online. Website.
- The AIDS Foundation of Chicago advocates for and provides resources to people living with or vulnerable to HIV and AIDS. It helps people get tested for HIV and connects those with HIV to health care. It also does work to prevent the spread of HIV and to advocate for housing and other services for people with the disease. You can find volunteer opportunities and make a monetary donation online. Website.
- Brave Space Alliance is a Black- and trans-led organization that works to empower and provide resources to queer and trans people, particularly those of color. It’s opened a community food pantry, helped participants connect with jobs, set up gender-reaffirming rooms and is creating a housing program. You can make a monetary donation. Website.
- The Center on Halsted provides a wide array of health and wellness care to LGBTQ people. It offers a variety of programs — including cooking classes and sports — as well as rapid HIV testing, housing for older queer people, therapy and job training. You can volunteer or make a donation. Website.
- The Chicago Coalition of Welcoming Churches is a collection of more than 80 churches and other ministries in the Chicagoland area that welcome and affirm all people. The coalition works to encourage inclusion of LGBTQ people in faith communities and to connect its members to resources. It hosts and participates in a variety of educational and faith-based events. You can become a member. Website.
- Chicago House provides services to and works to empower people living with or vulnerable to HIV and AIDS. It is particularly focused on providing reliable housing to those in need. You can find ways to donate online. Website.
- Chicago LGBT Asylum Support Partners is the local branch of the LGBT Freedom and Asylum Network. The organization provides support to queer people seeking asylum in Chicago. Website.
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- The Crib provides emergency housing and other services to young Chicagoans, with many of its residents identifying as LGBTQ. It is run by the Night Ministry. You can make a monetary donation online. Website.
- Equality Illinois protects the civil rights of LGBTQ people, and trains and empowers queer and allied organizations. It also has a political action committee that promotes candidates who support legislation that protects and empowers LGBTQ people. You can find volunteer opportunities and make a donation online. Website.
- Howard Brown Health provides affirming health and wellness care to LGBTQ people. It serves more than 40,000 people per year, with programs covering everything from primary medical and dental care to services for youth and older people. Its Broadway Youth Center provides resources and support to LGBTQ youth experiencing homelessness. You can find volunteer opportunities and make a donation online Website.
- Lambda Legal Illinois is the local branch of a national legal organization that advocates for the rights of LGBTQ people. It provides free legal representation to clients and works to change public policy to better protect queer people. You can find volunteer opportunities and make a donation online. Website.
- The LGBT Chamber of Commerce of Illinois is a Chicago-based organization that supports, promotes and provides resources to businesses in the state. Website.
- Life is Work Resources Center provides intervention services, resources and support to aid trans and non-binary people of color. It particularly focuses on advocacy work and connecting people with employment opportunities, legal services and safe housing. You can make a donation online. Website.
- Lighthouse Foundation of Chicagoland is a Black- and queer-led social justice group that seeks to empower LGBTQ people of color in the Chicagoland area. It provides everything from wellness help — it recently hosted a self-care retreat — to micro loans, a book club and entertaining events. You can make a monetary donation. Website.
- Masjid al-Rabia is a person-of-color-led and LGBTQ-affirming Islamic community center that provides support to marginalized Muslims, including those who are queer. It helps people access food, runs a free community library and hosts events like its weekly Jummah Prayer Service, which is billed as a “pluralist, trans- and disability-centered space.” You can find volunteer opportunities and make a donation online. Website.
- PrideArts celebrates the queer experience through performances at its theater, as well as through film festivals and events that showcase short and feature films, as well as documentaries about LGBTQ life. It also works to provide queer artists with a safe space to explore their work. You can make a monetary donation. Website.
- Project Fierce Chicago works to prevent and reduce homelessness among LGBTQ youth by providing housing and support services to people in need. It is a part of the Chicago Teachers Union Foundation. You can support the Chicago Teachers Union Foundation with a monetary donation. Website.
- The Transformative Justice Law Project is a collection of activists, legal workers and organizers who advocate for and provide support to low-income and unhoused trans people. Members represent and help trans people as they legally change their names, among other services. You can find volunteer opportunities online. Website.
- Trikone Chicago works to create a supportive, affirming environment for queer South Asians in and around Chicago. It hosts film festivals, cultural nights, awareness campaigns and other events. You can find volunteer opportunities online. Website.
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