For the second year, Sprott House received a significant financial donation generated from funds raised at the 2018 First Responders Pride party organized by the Toronto Police Service’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans Queer-Internal Support Network.
At a presentation ceremony at the YMCA on October 16, a cheque for $17,500 was presented to Sprott House which provides transitional housing support services for LGBTQ2S homeless youth in Toronto.
The YMCA of Greater Toronto operates Sprott House.
“This year, we are focusing on increasing programming for our young people,” said Jennifer White, the YMCA of Greater Toronto youth outreach and intervention general manager. “Some of the funds will be used for that as it really requires us taking our youth out into the community.”
A total of 25 LGBTQ2S youth live at Sprott House, supported by a team of case managers and youth workers, and regularly scheduled skills-building and recreational programming.
“We had a vision of coming together and having an event for all first responders to celebrate who they are and their pride both in sexual orientation and gender expression and also the pride in that they are first responders in the city of Toronto,” said Sgt. Henry Dyck, who co-chairs the Service’s LGBTQ-ISN, of what has become an annual event.
“It is wonderful to get together as first responders and have a good time, and raise some money for your community at the same time. We are happy to have Sprott House as a beneficiary.”
This year’s event sponsors were the Toronto Police Association, the Toronto Police Senior Officers’ Organization, the Toronto Professional Firefighters Association, the Toronto Paramedics Association and the Fly Night Club.
The second annual First Responders party raised $24,000.
A total of $7,000 was presented to local LGBTQ2S-focussed community groups.
Next year’s event will take place on June 15.