As North Jersey’s only LGBTQ Center, our mission is to create and sustain a safe space that fosters a better quality of life for our community and allies in the Greater Newark area. In doing so, our vision is to support the diverse community in our area by offering programs, services and events that address the plethora of concerns of LGBTQ individuals— including homelessness, economic empowerment, health and wellness and social injustice. We strive to affirm lives and create a space where the community feels welcomed, embraced, empowered and celebrated. The Center offers LGBTQ Newarkers a place to feel safe and comfortable, to network and build relationships, to learn leadership and advocacy skills, and to enjoy social interactions in an affirming environment.
October 3, 2013, the Center began in direct response to the many murders, suicides and hate crimes over the years against lesbian, gay and transgender people in Newark. Our community struggle to create a safe space went into full gear immediately after the shocking 2003 murder of Sakia Gunn, a 15-year-old lesbian whose life was taken on the streets of Newark while she was returning home from a visit to New York City.
Our Executive Director, Rev. Janyce L. Jackson, is a prominent and respected leader and activist in the community, and is the former Chair of the Newark LGBTQ Advisory Commission. She has generously served as pro-bono Executive Director for over a year. The Volunteer/Program Coordinator manages a team of volunteers and organizes Center activities.