Well, I’ll be darned. Out of all the surprising corners of Amazon, from the expansive butter churner selection to the 1,500 live lady bugs you can order to turn the tides of your luck (maybe don’t? maybe do? let us know how it goes?), the site’s AmazonSmile Charity List section (corny name; helpful initiative) takes le cake. Seriously, though, this section of the site offers a wide-reaching platform for organizations of all sizes—from grassroots mutual aid groups to big non-profits—–to present wishlists of items they need to support their work. And honestly, that’s really good news for people who can’t always attend on-the-ground actions, but still want to help, say, LGBTQ groups during Pride Month (and, like… every month)!
We’ve made a short list of five organizations you can help support this Pride Month by shopping their wishlists, including a national group that helps unhoused LGBTQ families find their footing in Oklahoma, a grassroots collective that sends books to incarcerated queer folks in the United States, and more. Send these wishlist pages to your group chats, work Slacks, and boomer parents. Look at the goods as a kind of blueprint for some of the items your own, local community fridges, nonprofits, and mutual aid groups might need. Just get that ball rolling, baby.
LGBT Books to Prisoners
“We are a trans-affirming, racial justice-focused, prison abolitionist project sending books to incarcerated LGBTQ-identified people across the United States,” says LGBT Books to Prisoners, which is based out of Madison, Wisconsin, and sends everything from queer erotica and memoirs to thrillers, fantasy, hobby and language books, prison-and-reentry titles, and more to incarcerated folks across the US. The group has sent “over 35,000 books to nearly 9,000 people in prison over the last three years.”
Support LGBT Books to Prisoners’ Wish List here.
Metro Trans Umbrella Group
The St. Louis, Missouri-based, grassroots organization Metro Trans Umbrella Group was founded “by transgender people, for transgender people,” and supplies unhoused transgender and non-binary people with basic hygiene and personal goods they need to live, such as hair products, food, cleaning supplies, coloring books, and menstrual products.
Support Metro Trans Umbrella Group’s Wish List here.
Ali Forney Center
The New York City-based Ali Forney Center is the United States’ largest LGBTQ unhoused youth services provider. It’s named after Ali Forney, who was an unhoused, gender-nonconforming young person who was forced to live on the streets at the age of 13. “Ali resorted to street work and drug use to survive,” says the Center. “He kept a close group of friends and educated anyone he encountered about HIV prevention and safe sex.” This wishlist is for items to serve other unhoused, queer people, and “most items are for basic needs: socks, underwear, and T-shirts,” says the Center’s team, “From time-to-time we will have special needs (monitors, DVD's, Books).”
Support the Ali Forney Center’s Wish List here.
PFLAG of Oklahoma City
Founded out of Oklahoma City, OK, in 1973, PFLAG (“Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays”) was the first family-based LGBTQ support organization of its kind. “[We’re] working to make sure that all people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer are not only valued by society, but take pride in and value themselves,” the group’s website states. “We do this through providing peer-to-peer support, educating people on the issues that are important to the community, and advocating for inclusive policies and laws.” The organization’s wishlist is filled with items the group needs for support meetings, including masks, notepads, water, and more.
Support PFLAG of Oklahoma City’s Wish List here.
Kiki Queens is “Chicago’s only live-singing, charity drag show” that gives 100% of the ticket proceeds to local LGBTQ nonprofits. “We formed in October of 2017 as a group of live-singing drag queens and other specialty performers,” the group says on its site. “The seed was planted when one of our Kiki Queens attended a Rubi Girls fundraising show in Dayton, Ohio. For those of you who don’t know them, they are a fantastic group of men who have been raising money (over $2 million) through drag performance for the last 30 years.” The show’s wishlist includes items for the nonprofits they support, as well as basic tech gear for the group’s live shows.
Support Kiki Queens’ Wish List here.
With Prime Day just around the corner, you can help these groups and more at a discount, with the maximum bang for your buck. Happy Pride to everyone (except the corporate dorks).
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