Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Equality:

Our initial grantmaking initiative, Laughing Gull Foundation's LGBTQ Equality Program was launched in 2013. We are committed to supporting the LGBTQ community in the U.S. South, with a particular focus on Virginia and North Carolina. We are not currently accepting applications, but you may email us at introductions@laughinggull.org to share information about your work.

August 2020: Laughing Gull Foundation Responds to Impact of COVID on LGBTQ BIPOC Communities...

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September 2020: Laughing Gull Foundation Welcomes New Program Officer & Supports the Southern Power Fund... read more

August 2020: Laughing Gull Foundation Responds to Impact of COVID on LGBTQ BIPOC Communities...

read more

Current Grantees:

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Since 1965, the ACLU-NC Legal Foundation has been North Carolina’s guardian of liberty – working in courts, the General Assembly, and communities to protect and advance constitutional rights for all of those who call North Carolina home. Since its founding, the ACLU-NC Legal Foundation has a long and proud history of fighting for equal rights for LGBTQ and gender nonconforming North Carolinians and their families. In 2018, LGF awarded the ACLU-NC Legal Foundation a three-year grant for general operating support.

The Campaign for Southern Equality (CSE) works to achieve full LGBTQ equality – both legal and lived – across the South. CSE uses a range of tools in their work, including direct services, direct action, litigation, and grantmaking to respond to immediate community needs, support a new generation of LGBTQ organizers, and build political power over the long term. CSE's work is rooted in commitments to equity and empathy. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported CSE since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded CSE a three-year grant for general operating support as well as a three-year grant to support the Southern Equality Fund.

Diversity Richmond envisions a community where LGBTQ+ citizens are treated with respect and dignity, and their unique gifts are championed and celebrated, thereby strengthening our community. In 2019, LGF awarded DR a 3-year project grant.

El Centro Hispano, Inc (ECH) is the largest Latino-led/Latino-serving organization in North Carolina and has been working with and on behalf of the Latino community since 1992.  ECH works to strengthen the community, build bridges, and serve as advocates for equity and inclusion of Hispanics /Latinos in the Triangle area of North Carolina. ECH achieves these purposes by making advancements in education, economic development, and health & well-being. In 2018, LGF awarded El Centro Hispano a three-year grant for support of its LGBTQ Programs.

Equality Federation is the movement builder and strategic partner to state-based organizations advocating for LGBTQ people. Equality Federation believes that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people should have a fair and equal opportunity to thrive and provide for themselves and their families in every community. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported Equality Federation since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded Equality Federation a three-year grant for its Victory South Initiative and a one-year grant for racial equity training at the Southern Leadership Summit.

The vision of Equality NC is that beyond legal rights and justice, we win “lived equality,” including safety and acceptance in the community at large for all LGBTQ North Carolinians. Our mission is to secure equal rights and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQ) North Carolinians. Laughing Gull Foundation supported ENC from 2013-2018. In 2019, LGF awarded ENC a three-year grant for general operating support.

Equality Virginia (EV) is the leading advocacy organization in Virginia seeking equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. EV is creating a truly inclusive commonwealth where all are equally valued, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, and a Virginia that is a safe, welcoming, and equal place for LGBT individuals and their families to live, work, and play. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported Equality Virginia since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded EV a three-year grant for general operating support and a three-year grant for the trans initiative.

Based in Charlotte, NC,  The Freedom Center for Social Justice (FCSJ) is committed to the growth, safety, and empowerment of the LGBTQ community. FCSJ's mission is accomplished through education, programs, partnerships, and advocacy.  They serve with care, compassion and celebration. FCSJ works at the intersection of sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, faith, social justice, race, and civil rights. The approach is intergenerational with the goal of culture shifts that establish greater protections, equity, and justice for those they serve. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported FCSJ since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded FCSJ a three-year grant for general operating support. In 2019, LGF awarded an additional one-year project grant.

The Fund for Trans Generations (FTG), housed at Borealis Philanthropy, was created by a diverse group of funders to ensure that frontline trans activists and organizations have the financial resources and engagement needed to advance the safety, security and rights of trans people. The Fund’s grantmaking is informed by and responsive to trans communities and movements. Borealis Philanthropy works as a partner to philanthropy, helping grantmakers expand their reach and impact. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported FTG since 2018. In 2019, LGF awarded Fund for Trans Generations a three-year project grant.

Funders for LGBTQ Issues (Funders) works to increase the scale and impact of philanthropic resources aimed at enhancing the well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer communities, promoting equity, and advancing racial, economic, and gender justice. Out in the South (OITS), an initiative of Funders, aims to transform philanthropy in the U.S. South to honor the fact that LGBTQ people and families are a part of every community in the region. Funders works to increase philanthropic resources that support a healthy ecosystem of LGBTQ organizations in the U.S. South. By bringing more funders to the table, investing in locally-driven Southern funds, and helping grantmakers increase their cultural competency, we work to reverse the historical trend of underinvestment in LGBTQ communities in the U.S. South.The OITS Initiative has made substantive progress toward its goal of increasing foundation funding for Southern LGBTQ communities: LGBTQ funding for the South increased from $4.8 million in 2012 to $22.8 million in 2017. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported Funders since 2014. In 2018, LGF awarded Funders a three-year grant for the Out in the South Initiative and the Out in the South Pooled Fund.

Health Brigade carries on a nearly 50-year legacy as Virginia’s oldest free clinic, offering a growing array of medical, mental health, community outreach, and care coordination services for low-income and uninsured persons. It is committed to serving the most marginalized populations in the community -- not only those with few resources -- but also those most oppressed and stigmatized. In 2018, LGF awarded Health Brigade a three-year grant to support LGBTQ Programs.

Horizons Foundation is a community foundation rooted in and dedicated to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Community. The Foundation exists to mobilize and increase resources for the LGBTQ movement and organizations that secure the rights, meet the needs, and celebrate the lives of LGBTQ people. As part of their work, they host Give OUT Day in April of each year. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported Give Out Day since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded Horizons Foundation a one-year grant to support two Southern Leader Boards for the 2018 Give OUT Day. In late 2018, LGF awarded a three-year grant to support the 2019-2021 Give OUT Days.

The US LGBTQ+ Women’s Research & Organizing Initiative (a project of Justice Work and fiscally sponsored by the National Center for Civic Innovation) addresses the significant gap in knowledge and advocacy about the life experiences, concerns, and needs of self-identified women who center other self-identified women in their sexual, familial, emotional and personal lives at any stage of their lives. The Initiative seeks to reset LGBTQ movement priorities and strategies as well as educate the larger public through expanding our knowledge base and understanding of the lives of LGBTQ+ women. In 2020, LGF awarded a one-year project grant to the Initiative.

The LGBT Life Center in Norfolk, VA, is a trusted leader that empowers the LGBTQ communities and all people affected by HIV through improving health and wellness, strengthening families and communities, and providing transformative education and advocacy. In 2020, LGF awarded the LGBT Life Center a three-year grant for general operating support.

The LGBT Center of Raleigh strengthens individual and community development through social and educational activities; facilitates the incubation of supportive services and groups; and identifies needs and advocates for resources benefiting the diverse population of lesbian, gay, transgender, and bisexual people, their friends, and supporters within and beyond central North Carolina. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported the LGBT Center of Raleigh since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded the LGBT Center of Raleigh a three-year grant for general operating support.

The LGBTQ Center of Durham is a safe and inclusive community committed to supporting and celebrating lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender and queer identified people in and around Durham, North Carolina through programming, resources, and networks of support; by acting as a hub for Durham’s LGBTQ community; and by sharing and affirming LGBTQ lived experiences. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported the LGBTQ Center of Durham since 2015. In 2020, LGF awarded the LGBTQ Center of Durham a three-year grant for general operating support.

The LGBTQ Racial Justice Fund (RJF) is a landmark funder collaborative dedicated to addressing the root causes of injustice for LGBTQ people of color (POC). As the only grantmaking body focused on the intersection of racial and LGBTQ justice in the U.S. South, RJF recognizes the leadership of LGBTQGNC POC in that under-resourced region and specifically focuses on their innovative and inspiring organizing. RJF’s long-term vision is for a society in which LGBTQ people of color are welcomed, affirmed, and respected and can live full, authentic lives without fear of demonization, criminalization, or institutional discrimination. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported the LGBTQ Racial Justice Fund since 2016. In 2020, LGF awarded a fourth one-year grant to  the LGBTQ Racial Justice Fund.

Lynchburg Diversity Center's mission is to empower, educate, support, and advocate for LGBTQ+ individuals and groups in Lynchburg and the surrounding areas. The LDC seeks to network and foster collaborations with new and existing organizations to grow a vibrant community that shares the values of diversity, dignity, equality, civility, and civic engagement. In 2018, LGF awarded LDC a three-year grant for general operating support.

The Movement Advancement Project’s mission is to provide independent and rigorous research, insight and communications that help speed equality and opportunity for all. MAP works to ensure that all people have a fair chance to pursue health and happiness, earn a living, take care of the ones they love, be safe in their communities, and participate in civic life. In 2019, LGF awarded a one-year project grant to MAP.

The National LGBTQ Task Force advances full freedom, justice, and equality for LGBTQ people. As part of their work, the Task Force hosts the Creating Change Conference, which is attended by thousands of LGBTQ+ activists each year. In 2020, LGF awarded The Task Force a three-year project grant for the Creating Change Conference.

Nationz Foundation was incorporated on May 27, 2015 and founded by Zakia McKensey an African American Transgender Woman. Nationz Foundation mission is to provide education, HIV counseling, HIV prevention counseling, HIV and other STI testing, and information related to HIV prevention and overall health and wellness, while inspiring healthier lifestyle choices and working toward a more inclusive community for LGBT identified individuals. Nationz is open non-traditional work hours daily, and provides non-traditional testing at non-traditional test sites. In 2018, LGF awarded Nationz Foundation a three-year grant for general operating support.

OUTRight Youth of Catawba Valley seeks to reduce the isolation felt by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth by providing a sense of community and developing programs and services to counteract the prejudice and oppression that LGBTQ youth often face. Their vision is to inspire inclusive schools and communities where all youth are treated equally and empowered to reach their true potential. In 2019, LGF awarded a two-year grant for general operating support to OUTRight Youth.

SHIFT NC's mission is leading North Carolina to improve adolescent and young adult sexual health -so young people grow up healthy. Sexual health matters. SHIFT NC works to empower North Carolinians so that every adolescent grows up in a state that is equipped to support their sexual health. Investing in young people’s sexual health benefits them, our state, and our communities now and in the future. In 2018, LGF awarded SHIFT NC a three-year grant for LGBTQ Programs.

Side by Side, formerly ROSMY, is dedicated to creating supportive communities where Virginia’s LGBTQ+ youth can define themselves, belong, and flourish. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported Side by Side since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded Side by Side a three-year grant for general operating support.

Southerners On New Ground (SONG) is a home for LGBTQ liberation across all lines of race, class, abilities, age, culture, gender, and sexuality in the South. SONG builds, sustains, and connects a southern regional base of LGBTQ people in order to transform the region through strategic projects and campaigns developed in response to the current conditions in our communities. SONG builds this movement through leadership development, intersectional analysis, and organizing. SONG envisions a sustainable South that embodies the best of its freedom traditions and works towards the transformation of our economic, social, spiritual, and political relationships. SONG is committed to restoring a way of being that recognizes our collective humanity and dependence on the Earth. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported SONG since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded SONG a three-year grant for general operating support.

The Southern Vision Alliance (SVA) is a grassroots intermediary organized to provide infrastructure, capacity-building, coaching, and technical assistance to groups and projects led by directly-impacted communities, with a special emphasis on youth-led programs. SVA supports leadership development, organizing, and base-building programs that work for social, racial, economic, gender, education, LGBTQ and environmental justice in the US South. In 2018, LGF awarded The Southern Vision Alliance a three-year grant for general operating support, as well as a one-year grant for its Frontline Funds. LGF continued support for Frontline Funds with an additional one-year grant in 2020.

Based in Charlotte, NC,  Time Out Youth (TOY) supports lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning youth by offering vital programs, fostering unconditional acceptance, and creating safe spaces for self-expression through leadership, community support, and advocacy. Time Out Youth envisions inspiring inclusive communities where all youth are equally empowered to reach their true potential. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported TOY since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded TOY a three-year grant for general operating support. În 2019, LGF also awarded a 2-year project grant to support the Virtual Youth Center.

The Trans Justice Funding Project (TJFP) is a community-led funding initiative that supports grassroots, trans justice groups run by and for trans people. TJFP makes grants annually by bringing together a panel of six trans justice activists from around the country to carefully review every application received. They center the leadership of trans people organizing around their experiences with racism, economic injustice, transmisogyny, ableism, immigration, incarceration, and other intersecting oppressions. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported TJFP since 2018. In 2019, LGF awarded The Trans Justice Funding Project a three-year project support grant.

Tranzmission's mission is to help make the lives of non binary and transgender people safer, healthier, and happier through education, advocacy, and support. In 2018, LGF awarded Tranzmission a three-year grant for general operating support.

The Virginia Anti-Violence Project [VAVP] works to prevent and address violence in diverse LGBTQ+ communities across Virginia. The work is rooted in the values of community; family and relationships; intersectionality and racial justice; LGBTQ+ liberation/equity; trust/accessibility; fun/creativity; integrity/transparency; and language justice. VAVP works to provide a world free from all forms of violence, such as: homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, heterosexism, cis-sexism, racism, classism, sexism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, ableism, ageism, hate/bias motivated violence, intimate partner violence, sexual violence, state-sanctioned violence, stalking, bullying, and harassment. In 2018, LGF awarded the Virginia Anti-Violence Project a three-year grant for general operation support.

The Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities (VCIC) works to achieve success through inclusion. VCIC works with schools, businesses, and communities to achieve success by addressing prejudices, in all forms, to improve academic achievement, increase workplace productivity, and enhance local trust. VCIC envisions a Virginia where every person is included and where prejudice, intolerance, and fear of facing those issues don’t stand in the way of success for our schools, businesses, and communities. In 2018, LGF awarded VA Center for Inclusive Communities a three-year grant for general operating support focused on LGBTQ issues.

Youth OUTright is dedicated to supporting, empowering and advocating for LGBTQIA+ youth ages 11-20n throughout Western North Carolina. YO engages and supports LGBTQIA+ youth ages 11-20 to be confident, resilient and compassionate community members. We envision a world where youth of all gender and sexual identities are empowered to reach their full potential, free of discrimination or violence based on identity. In 2019, LGF awarded a three-year grant for general operating support to YO.