Dear Community Member,
As we celebrate the holiday season, we at the Rainbow Community Center want to highlight the reality that this time of year is often difficult for our LGBTQ community members. Many of us have experienced family rejection. It is essential this time of year that we come together to support each other with love, empathy, and compassion.
The counseling and case management services we offer at Rainbow are an essential element to building a more loving, compassionate, and resilient community. Rainbow not only provides programs like our youth group to LGBTQ community members, but the center also provides free and low cost mental health services to LGBTQ people and their families.
Former Case Management Program Director Tech Tran, who now serves as our social work field instructor and consultant, is passionate about the ways in which the mental health and case management services at the center change people’s lives.
“I have seen people come in through Rainbow’s doors really down trodden, and I’ve seen them transformed over time, because of the love and the connection that people build here with staff, volunteers, and interns. They feel a sense of self and appreciation for who they are, and then they develop community.”
Tech is most proud of the work the center does with case management and with families of LGBTQ people. Rainbow works to support LGBTQ families in their path towards acceptance of their LGBTQ loved ones.
“The most impact I think we have is around the one-on-one case management work, and the family engagement work. We help families and people to understand that above all else there is nothing more important that the human to human connection.”
Tech identifies as a hetero-cisgender, Vietnamese Californian. As a social worker, Tech is a fierce advocate and strong ally against the oppression of minority and marginalized people. Tech said his life’s philosophy in working with oppressed populations, and in being an effective ally, is to lead with love, empathy, and compassion.
Tech came to the center as a volunteer who was interested in learning more about social work and about the LGBTQ community. He stayed with the center as one of our first social work interns. Over the next five years he came onto staff as a case worker, moved up to become our Case Management Program Director. Along the way he completed his master’s degree and then accumulated the 2000 post-masters hours he needed to become a licensed social worker. Tech recently accepted a position with the local Mt. Diablo School District to create a counseling and social services center at a local high school but remains with Rainbow as a trainer and consultant. He represents the commitment that Rainbow has made through our training programs to prepare the next generation of mental health providers to serve our LGBTQ community members with compassion and respect.
“Love empathy and compassion have helped me to embrace the community but also to be embraced by the community,” said Tech.
Tech’s personal philosophy is encompassed in all of the work we do at the RCC. Tech said that what separates RCC from other non-profits agencies is that there is an All Right Door policy, which means that the RCC does not turn people away. Whether you are someone reentering from incarceration, someone with a mental illness, and if you identify within the community or not, the RCC accepts you, wants to hear your story, and will treat you with kindness.
“While we are called the Rainbow Community Center, you can replace that word community with compassion, counseling, connection, character, collaboration – and you get a center that comprises all of those things.”
When you donate to Rainbow’s End-of-Year Campaign, you help to create a safe haven that so many within our community need, especially during the holiday season. Your donation means contributing to a Community Center that provides love, empathy, and compassion.
We want to thank all who have already donated to support our LGBTQ community center during our annual year-end fundraiser! We hope that you will join with RCC’s many amazing and loyal donors, staff, board members and volunteers to help sustain local programs for LGBTQ Seniors, Youth, People Living with HIV/AIDS and community members in need of Mental Health Services.
Our community feels your year-end generosity throughout the year. Please help us continue to sustain the connections that lovingly hold us up, and hold us together.
Ken Carlson Ben Barr, PhD
Board President Executive Director
Click this link to donate now: http://tinyurl.com/