ACT recently received a $4,000 grant from the Samara Fund at the Vermont Community Foundation. The grant will support the continuation of YourSpace events—a monthly series hosted by ACT in partnership with Queer Connect—for LGBTQ+ and allied youth in Bennington. YourSpace events are planned by a team of middle and high schoolers, and center joy, community, and empowerment.
“Many queer youth don’t have many safe places or people in their lives to help and support them,” said a YourSpace youth organizer. “So with these events, we ensure that they will have places for them to feel loved, accepted, and safe.”
Last year’s events included a movie night, open mic cafe game night, cooking class, and outdoor recreation.
“We are very grateful to the Samara Fund and Vermont Community Foundation for supporting the YourSpace event series,” said ACT director Dare Chammings. “Our youth leaders do an incredible job creating spaces for their peers to feel seen and celebrated. Events such as these build feelings of mattering, strengthen connectedness, and increase mental health outcomes for our community’s young people.”
The Samara Fund at the Vermont Community Foundation is dedicated to nurturing the vitality, success, and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities in Vermont through dynamic and sustained philanthropy.