The Henderson Equality Center is a community supported organization created to engage, empower, enrich, and advance the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, allies, and queer community of Henderson, Nevada. It provides a safe space, a place to pursue resources, and provides courses focused on educational, social, support, skill building, and job assistance classes for at-risk, low-income LGBTQ youth and adults.
The Henderson Equality Center first opened its doors on June 8, 2020 in a 900 square foot office space. In less than three months, however, the Center expanded and moved into a new office space with 3,000 square feet. This new and bigger space has provided the Center with many more opportunities to help the community. There are many programs offered, such as youth tutoring services, NA and AA support groups, Youth in Recovery support groups, GSA Youth Group, Trans Youth Social Group, Bisexual Youth Social Group, Adult Trans Social Group, Lesbian Social Network, LGBTQ People of Color Peer Social Group, Asian/Pacific Islander Social Group, Bisexual Social Group for Adults, and Reiki Circles.
In February of this year, the Henderson Equality Center added an HIV/STD testing clinic. This is going to be an amazing addition and service provided to those in need. Another service offered by the Center is the Youth Food Pantry, open every Tuesday and Thursday. Teens in need of food only need to show their school ID card to take advantage of this service. Along with the food pantry, there is also a Clothing Room for those community members who may be in need of more clothes.
As March is home to International Women’s Day, let’s highlight how the Henderson Equality Center works with wonderful women in the community. First off, out of the nine board members, six of those members are women: Sharyn Mitchell, Kat Diane Sandigo, Rachel Marsh, Samantha Palaggi, Sarah Mitchell, and Angelica Cuevas. The Henderson Equality Center also has multiple social groups that cater to all women.
LESBIAN SOCIAL NETWORK
The Lesbian Social Network (LSN) is an open topic group run by women for women.
Ages 18 and older, who identify as lesbian, bisexual, queer, or are questioning their sexuality.
Meets: 1st Monday of each month, 6:00-7:30pm
BISEXUAL+ SOCIAL GROUP FOR ADULTS
This is a social group for individuals who identify as bisexual+. The groups meets to provide peer support, discuss and share experiences, learn and practice effective communication to build trust and intimacy for relationships, and build a community for the bisexual+ community.
Meets: 1st Wednesday of each month 6:30-7:30pm
ADULT TRANS SOCIAL GROUP
This is a peer led and confidential social group for individuals who identify as trans men, trans masculine and/or female-to-male (FtM), trans women, trans feminine and/or male-to-female
(MtF). This is a safe, drop-in space providing peer-run social support, engaging conversation, and relevant resources to attendees.
Meets: 3rd Wednesday of each month 6:30-7:30pm
Henderson Equality Center during 2021 will host monthly Bingo nights, a youth Easter Egg Hunt, job readiness programs, Pride Fest, National Coming Out Day, Toy Drive, meals for Thanksgiving and Christmas, and more! The Henderson Equality Center has had an incredible first year of being open, and has already provided for hundreds of families. We are hopeful that the year 2021 will bring even more help to those in our community.