CHICAGO — The city has many LGBTQ+ community organizations dedicated to supporting neighbors.
Block Club Chicago rounded up this list of 20 LGBTQ+ community organizations that provide help with sexual wellness and health care, housing, mutual aid, food and other resources.
This list is not exhaustive. If you know of an organization or initiative that should be in this guide, email email@example.com.
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 runs a book club, hosts support groups and organizes events like its Family Reunion barbecue 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 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 launched the Lucy Hicks Anderson Housing Support program to provide transitional housing to trans women and femmes of color. It also has a trans relief and funeral fund. You can make a monetary donation online. 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 LGBTQ+ people, therapy and job training. There are also programs centered around behavioral health, anti-violence and youth and family. 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 people of all sexual orientations and gender identities. 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, as well as year-round and Pride Month programs and service opportunities. You can become a member online. Website.
• Chicago House works to empower people living with or vulnerable to HIV and AIDS. It focuses on providing reliable housing to those in need as it aims to be part of an effort to get to zero new HIV/AIDS infections by 2030. 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 LGBTQ+ people seeking asylum in Chicago. Website.
• 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 LGBTQ+ and allied organizations. It has a political action committee that promotes candidates who support legislation protecting and empowering LGBTQ+ people. It also guides LGBTQ+ people looking to become politically engaged to other resources and programs. 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. There are Howard Brown Health locations across the city, plus a research center focused on working with health care professionals and advancing policies that improve the lives of LGBTQ+ people and their families. You can find volunteer opportunities and make a donation online. Website.
• Invisible 2 Invincible (i2i) is an organization that aims to celebrate and affirm LGBTQ+ Asians and Pacific Islanders living in the Chicago area. The group supports immigrant and refugee issues, reproductive justice, racial justice solidarity work and family acceptance of LGBTQ+ Asians and Pacific Islanders. It regularly hosts potlucks, educational events, campaign-related events and collaborations with other Chicago-based organizations. You can find volunteer opportunities and donate 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 LGBTQ+ people. You can find volunteer opportunities and make a donation online. Website.
• Life is Work Resources Center provides intervention services, resources and support for trans and non-binary people of color. It 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 to micro loans, a book club, a workforce development conference, its Voices of Light arts program and other 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 resources and support to marginalized Muslims, including those who are LGBTQ+. It helps people access food, runs a free community library, sends free care packages nationally to incarcerated Muslims, and it hosts events like a 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 LGBTQ+ experience through performances at its theater as well as film festivals and events that showcase short and feature films and documentaries about LGBTQ+ life. It also works to provide LGBTQ+ artists with a safe space to explore their work. You can make a monetary donation and get tickets for its shows online. 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. They also work in prison abolition and transformative justice. You can find volunteer opportunities online. Website.
• TPAN is an Edgewater-based organization providing programs and support services for individuals living with and vulnerable to HIV since 1987. TPAN publishes a nationally distributed HIV treatment and health magazine, Positively Aware, and runs the annual Ride for Life Chicago bicycling event, this year billed as Victory Lap Chicago. You can find volunteer opportunities and ways to donate online. Website.
• Trikone Chicago works to create a supportive, affirming environment for LGBTQ+ 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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