Corpus Christi soon will become the sixth city in Texas to have an LGBT community center. If all goes as planned, the new facility will open in March 2019.
The new center will be part of the Coastal Bend Wellness Foundation, which was formerly the Coastal Bend AIDS Foundation. In 2012, the nonprofit changed its name and became a health center which now offers adult primary healthcare, youth programs, women’s health services, HIV/AIDS care, behavioral healthcare, sexual healthcare and testing, and LGBT wellness programs.
“We have always been at the forefront for helping the LGBT community and we recognize that the LGBT community doesn’t often have a seat at the table,” Bill Hoelscher, the chief executive officer of the CBWF, told the Corpus Christi Caller Times. “In our work with health and health disparities in the community, we saw that people often didn’t feel safe or didn’t have a place to feel safe.”
The center will be located inside the CBWF’s new building, which is currently under construction. The new facility represents a major step forward for LGBT people who live in the Texas Coastal Bend.
Fundraising for the LGBT center’s programs is underway. Organizers are hoping to raise $100,000 a year.
Angie Baker, the LGBT youth coordinator for the CBWF, has been tapped as the primary lead for the new center. She told the Caller Times she hopes to hear from the community as to what services the facility should offer. She foresees programs for senior LGBT people, resources for job hunting, educational services and generally providing a safe space for the LGBT community to meet.