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The Pride Center of Maryland is for Us ALL: A Call to Support

Updated: Oct 26, 2023



In my journey as an activist deeply rooted in the Black experience and as a stalwart supporter of same-gender-loving (or SGL), bisexual, and gender-nuanced voices, I've been very fortunate to witness the intricate tapestry of identities, backgrounds, and experiences that the sexual and gender minority (SGM) and LGBTQ spectrum encompasses. Much of my life's work has delved into the challenges and triumphs of a diverse Black community. Today, simultaneous to that commitment, my vision is broader to lead The Pride Center of Maryland (PCOM). As PCOM's CEO, I am anchored in inclusion. This center represents a sanctuary for all, irrespective of race, color, or creed. Yet, like all sanctuaries, it requires our collective support to flourish.


PCOM is unique among Pride centers in the country in that while people who are Black, White, Latin X, Native, Asian, and multi-racial make up our staff, clients, volunteers, interns, and supporters, the organization's headquarters is located within a majority Black city, where Black culture and history is pervasive. This reality is affirmed and celebrated at PCOM, which was not always the case at this same organization less than ten years ago.


The richness of our community lies not only in its diversity but also in its resilience. The Pride Center of Maryland (PCOM) is a testament to this resilience, ensuring that each voice, story, and experience is heard and embraced. Our doors are wide open, our programs are growing, and our outreach is expanding. But to continue this momentum, we need your involvement.


PCOM isn't just a physical location; it's a lifeline for many. It's the place where a young Black SGL woman and a White transgender youth can both find solace and acceptance, where a trans man of Native decent discovers a community that supports his transition, where a Latinx non-binary person feels truly seen, and where an Asian bisexual woman, White LGBTQ woman and man and SGL Black males and our allies ALL find camaraderie. We appeal to you for support to ensure that this beacon remains a light to guarantee that PCOM's invaluable services persist.


Regardless of size, every donation translates into a message of hope and affirmation. It ensures that our programs run, resources remain available, and the community thrives. Your contributions directly affect the well-being, acceptance, and love countless individuals find within our walls.


The transformative power of community is unparalleled, but sustaining such a community requires shared responsibility. When we pool our resources, our voices amplify, our strength solidifies, and our reach extends. Every challenge we face becomes a challenge we overcome together. Every success becomes a shared triumph.


In asking for your financial support, I invite you to be a part of something bigger. To be part of a movement that stands for love, self-acceptance, and understanding. To be part of a legacy that says, "We are here, we are united, and we support each other."


Please consider donating to The Pride Center of Maryland. In doing so, you're not just giving funds; you're giving hope, love, and a future to countless individuals along the SGL, LGBTQ, and SGM spectrum.


Together, we can ensure that The Pride Center of Maryland (PCOM) remains a steadfast pillar for all. I urge you to join us in this mission, for it's not just my belief but a proven truth – The Pride Center of Maryland is, unequivocally, for us ALL.


-Dr.Cleo Manago, CEO, PRIDE CENTER OF MARYLAND




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