Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, & Other Identities (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 a one-page introduction to 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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Laughing Gull Foundation seeks next Executive Director... Read more

July 2021: Laughing Gull Foundation Commits $1.98 Million in Grants to Organizations Advancing Justice for LGBTQ+ Southerners... 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. LGF has supported the ACLU-NC Legal Foundation since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded the ACLU-NC Legal Foundation a three-year grant for general operating support.

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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 FundIn 2021, both 2018 grants were extended by two years.

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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 Diversity Richmond a 3-year project grant.

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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. LGF has supported ECH since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded ECH a three-year grant for support of its LGBTQ Programs.

Equality Federation Institute 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. In 2021, the 2018 grant was extended by one year.

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The vision of Equality NC (ENC) 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. ENC's 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 EV since 2013. In 2018, LGF awarded EV a three-year grant for general operating support and a three-year grant for the trans initiative. In 2021, both 2018 grants were extended by one year.

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 2021, the 2018 grant was extended by one year.

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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 the FTG 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 2021, LGF awarded Funders a three-year grant for the Out in the South Initiative and the Out in the South Pooled Fund.

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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. In 2021, the 2018 grant was extended by one year.

Horizons Foundation is the world’s first community foundation of, by, and for LGBTQ people, Horizons invests in LGBTQ nonprofits, strengthens a culture of LGBTQ giving, and builds a permanent endowment to secure the LGBTQ community’s future for generations to come. As part of that work, Horizons hosts Give OUT Day each year. Laughing Gull Foundation has supported Give Out Day since 2013. In late 2018, LGF awarded Horizons a three-year grant to support the 2019-2021 Give OUT Days. In 2021, the 2018 grant was extended by one year.

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House of Pentacles (HOP) is focused on cultural organizing and narrative power led by and for Black Trans and Gender Non-Conforming people. HOP believes there is no racial justice nor trans/gender justice without economic justice. In 2021, LGF awarded HOP a three-year grant for general operating support.

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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. In 2021, the 2018 grant was extended by one year.

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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.

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The Movement for Black Lives (M4BL) is a national network of more than 150 leaders and organizations creating a broad political home for Black people to learn, organize and take action. M4BL includes activists, organizers, academics, lawyers, educators, health workers, artists and more, all unified in a radical vision for Black liberation and working for equity, justice and healing. In 2021, LGF awarded M4BL a 3-year grant to support the Trans Gender Non Conforming Intersex Task Force.

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The National LGBTQ Task Force (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.

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Nationz Foundation was incorporated on May 27, 2015 and founded by Zakia McKensey an African American Transgender Woman. Nationz's 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. LGF has supported Nationz since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded Nationz Foundation a three-year grant for general operating support.

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The North Carolina LGBTQ Domestic Violence Initiative's  mission is to increase the capacity of communities to provide safe, affirming, and quality service to LGBTQ-identified survivors of domestic violence. In 2021, LGF awarded The NC LGBTQ Domestic Violence Initiative a one-year project grant.

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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. OUTRight Youth's 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.

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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. LGF has supported SHIFT NC since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded SHIFT NC a three-year grant for LGBTQ Programs.

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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 2021, 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. In 2021, the 2018 grant was extended by two years.

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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. LGF has supported SVA since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded the SVA a three-year grant for general operating support.

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 2021, LGF awarded TOY a three-year grant for general operating support. 

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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 TJFP a three-year project support grant.

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Tranzmission's mission is to help make the lives of non binary and transgender people safer, healthier, and happier through education, advocacy, and support. LGF has supported Tranzmission since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded Tranzmission a three-year grant for general operating support.

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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. LGF has supported VAVP since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded the VAVP a three-year grant for general operation support.

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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. LGF has supported VCIC since 2018. In 2021, LGF awarded VCIC a three-year grant for general operating support focused on LGBTQ issues.

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Youth OUTright (YO) 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.