If you’ve made it to this page, you already know Fenway Health is a cutting-edge health center, and one of the largest in the world specializing in LGBT health. You might not know that Fenway serves over 21,000 patients with more than 109,000 visits per year in primary care, dentistry, optometry and behavioral health. Demographically, 1,800 of those patients are living with HIV, more than 1,200 are transgender, and about 2,000 are LGBT youth, many of whom are homeless after being disowned because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
I work for Fenway at the National LGBT Health Education Center, part of the Fenway Institute. The Institute is the research, policy, and education arm of Fenway Health. I’m going to guess that many of you didn’t even know that Fenway had a division doing research, policy and education. At the Education Center, our team of three provides educational programs, resources, and consultation to health care organizations with the goal of optimizing quality, cost-effective, and culturally responsive health care for LGBT people. Practically speaking, that means we leverage the incredible work going on at the Institute into trainings for health professionals. The Institute currently has more than 50 studies ranging from HIV vaccine trials to behavioral health and substance use interventions, and the Education Center has reached over 3,000 clinicians for training since 2012.
I started at Fenway a few months after I finished grad school, and I couldn’t feel luckier. Not many of my former classmates can say that they work for an organization that is not only doing relevant work, but is a pioneer in that work. When I meet people at conferences – people KNOW Fenway. Around the time I joined the Young Leaders Council (YLC), I represented the Education Center at the Annual Conference of the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association in Denver. When I’d introduce myself and say I worked at Fenway, people were impressed. It was amazing! And it made me so proud to hand out my business card with that Fenway logo on the back.
I joined the YLC for a few reasons: to meet other remarkable people who are interested in Fenway, to support an organization I’m passionate about, and, quite frankly, because I could not be happier or luckier to be a part of this organization. And I know I’m not alone. However it is that you got to this blog, you are connected to Fenway. You’re a patient, or a friend, or maybe you’ll be a patient after reading this. What I’m here to ask, is that you join me.
Join me in making a difference for our community. Join me to connect with like-minded peers at social, cultural and service events like brewery tours, film screenings, panel discussions, and cocktail parties. Join me to contribute $25 per month. Match my donation today—realistically, $25 is a few trips to Starbucks, or one night out. This amount of giving will provide Fenway Health with tremendous support, and help us to eclipse the total that YLC members donated last year (over $100,000!). Please, reach into your wallet, and let’s make a difference together.
Thanks for your support!
Questions about the YLC? Contact Gena Ricciardi at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 617-927-6483.