Not every LGBTQ community members receives support from their biological families. Many LGBTQ members have “chosen families”, the network of friends that a community member finds their support system. Unfortunately statistics show the “chosen families” support system mostly occurs with younger generations.
LGBTQ Seniors are twice as likely to live alone, twice as likely to be single and almost 75% less likely to have children. These Seniors also live in poverty and face discrimination. It is difficult for LGBTQ Seniors to receive the social services they need. The GRIOT Circle Community Center in Brooklyn is trying to change this.
GRIOT, stands for “Gay Reunion in Our Time,” was founded in 1996 as an organization to help LGBTQ Seniors of color find community. It has recently partnered with SAGE USA, the nation’s largest social service organization serving LGBTQ elders, to help expand programming.
GRIOT offers programs like book club and tai-chai free of charge to its members. The center also provides lunch free daily to provide a sense of connection. To these LGBTQ Seniors, community is everything.Chosen Families, Elderly, GRIOT Circle, LGBTQ Seniors, SAGE USA