June 2020

Appeal to Friends of Senior Pride

Who could have imagined a few short months ago how our lives would change! Yes, we are facing enormous obstacles. But Southern Arizona Senior Pride will not be deterred. Thanks to you we not only persist, we thrive.

As LGBTQI+ seniors, we have all faced seemingly insurmountable challenges throughout our lives, from the “Lavender Scare” to the worst years of AIDS to unspeakable decades of discrimination. Together we have lifetimes of strength and wisdom to draw upon. And now we are engaging that strength and wisdom to serve our community more effectively than ever.

We have already transitioned support groups, home visits, our book club, and speaker series to new formats, using the telephone as well as online and video chat technologies. We will continue to be here for you and all of our sisters and brothers.

photo of Lee Crosby in front of library book shelves

I am proud of my long career as a nurse and nurse practitioner, and especially of my years in the U.S. Navy, my service in Viet Nam and more than twelve years at the VA hospital in Tucson. Although in my work life I never felt free and open about my lifestyle, I am now free to be who I really am. Many seniors lack family support and feel alone and isolated. In my work with the Senior Pride Community Cares program, I have an opportunity to connect isolated seniors to the community by friendly visits and phone calls. But none of this happens without your support, for which all of us at Senior Pride are so grateful!

Lee Crosby
Volunteer Director of Community Cares Program
Steering Committee Vice Chair

By embracing technology we can expand our geographic reach throughout Southern Arizona. We are currently approaching funders to help us obtain computers and tablets for clients who can’t afford them. We will provide technical instruction so that people who benefit from our services from home can join us via Zoom meetings, or visit with a volunteer over video call, or check out entertainment, cultural, and educational offerings on our new YouTube channel.

We will soon be approaching donors to fund a new paid part-time executive director position that will enable us to expand our reach to clients. (Yes, Lavina and Joyce and a corps of stalwart volunteers have done wonders – but at the rate we are growing we need to plan for staff help, too.)

photo of Gary Gardner in Hawaian shirt in front of a brick wall

I came to Senior Pride about 16 months ago as a way to address the isolation I was feeling and to connect with the community. I met many dedicated and talented people in Senior Pride. As I look at what this team has accomplished as an all volunteer organization, I am continually amazed. I feel honored to be Chair of the Steering Committee and grateful to be able to further the mission of Senior Pride. And I’m especially grateful for your contributions!”

Gary Gardner
Steering Committee Chair
Development/PR Committee Member

As we work on new ways of expanding our services, we need your continued help to maintain current programs. June is Pride Month in much of the United States. And Senior Pride has a great deal to be proud of. We are resilient and we are living our mission. You’ve no doubt heard from other organizations saying they can’t do much of anything at present, but need money. This is not one of those letters. Together we are accomplishing so much, and we ask you to support Southern Arizona Senior Pride because with your help we will continue to succeed.

Because of you, Southern Arizona Senior Pride is thriving, growing and adapting to meet the needs of our community. But we need your continued help to cover the costs of day to day operations.

Even for those who do not itemize deductions, the new CARES ACT allows taxpayers to claim up to $300 of charitable giving in 2020 as a deduction.

Here’s to thriving in the face of adversity, and to all you make possible through Senior Pride!

Sincerely,
Gary Gardner
Lee Crosby

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