The Inside Scoop
December 2018
Welcome to Youth Pride, Inc.'s December edition of The Inside Scoop! This edition covers World AIDS Day, Hasbro's Global Day of Joy, and our three new board members! You may notice this edition is more compact than previous ones, that is due to our winter closing from Christmas-New Years. Next month's edition will include all of our regular sections.
World AIDS Day 30th Anniversary
Everyone knows how December ends: gifts, quality time with loved ones, too much dessert, and watching the ball drop. But does everyone know how December starts? Established in 1988 by the World Health Organization (WHO), December 1st was designated international World AIDS Day; 2018 marks the 30th anniversary. World AIDS Day is the longest running disease awareness initiative in public health history. The purpose for this day is threefold; seeking to bring awareness and education about HIV/AIDS to the public, unite people in the ongoing fight against HIV/AIDS, and stand in solidarity with those infected by HIV/AIDS along with those who have been lost to the disease.  

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the worldwide prevalence (number of all cases) of HIV in 2017 was about 36.9 million. The incidence (number of new cases) of HIV in 2017 was 1.8 million. Of the 36.9 million living with HIV/AIDS, only 21.7 million were receiving antiretroviral therapy for treatment. An estimated 940,000 individuals died from HIV/AIDS related illnesses in 2017. Since the virus’s discovery in 1984, over 35 million individuals have died from it, making HIV/AIDS one of the most devastating pandemics history has experienced.
As part of the initiatives set up by WHO, World AIDS Day seeks to educate the public about HIV and eliminate the stigma and discrimination experienced by those living with it. If you have been diagnosed, or believe you are high risk for contracting the virus (for example, if your partner has HIV or if you share intravenous drugs), there are treatment options for you. HIV is no longer a death sentence. Antiviral drugs are prescribed to treat viral infections; not to kill the virus but inhibit further development of it. These drugs can be taken preemptively before an individual is exposed to HIV, referred to as Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), or after exposure, known as Post-exposure Prophylaxis or PeP.
To do our part in preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS, Youth Pride, Inc. offers free safer sex supplies such as condoms, dental dams, and more. We also host free and confidential HIV testing on a monthly basis in conjunction with AIDS Project RI (APRI). HIV testing dates can be found on our website. APRI can refer individuals to providers who provide PrEP or Pep services.
YPI Welcomes Three New Board Members
Youth Pride happily welcomed three new board members earlier this month. Guillaume Bagal, Tom Canterino, and Tayla Reo will make excellent additions to our team and have been longtime advocates for LGBTQ youth and the communitty.

In addition to being deeply rooted in the community, a few of our new members have preexisting internal ties with YPI. Bagal was on the host committee for this year's Rainbow Party and Reo leads Hasbro's PRIDE network which facilitated monthly Game Nights at YPI.

To learn more about our new board members, you can read our press release on our website!
It's the Most Wonderful Time...of Drop-In!
Thanks to the hardworking employees at Hasbro, our center has been turned into a Candyland replica complete with three Christmas trees, a lifesize gingerbread person, several gingerbread houses, and even oversized decorative candies! On December 13th, Hasbro celebrated their 6th Global Day of Joy; a day where Hasbro employees perform acts of service around the community. The employees assigned to YPI not only decorated our space, but baked several trays of holiday cookies for our holiday party and wrapped a multitude of Hasbro Board Games for our youth.

Global Day of Joy set the stage for our annual holiday party. This year, YPI hosted one singular holiday party where all of our youth, both our 13 and under and 13 and over groups, celebrated together. More than 75 youth attended the party and had a blast. In addition to decorating gingerbread cookies, crafting personalized stockings, and sipping on hot chocolate, youth participated in a Yankee Swap gift exchange. Several of our gifts were board games donated by Hasbro. Gifts also included winter gear such as hats, gloves, scarves, and socks. Several art inspired gifts were also hidden under the tree; young adult coloring books, paint, and pastel sets to name a few.
We sincerely hope our youth enjoyed spending the evening with us as much as we enjoyed spending it with them. In anticipation of our winter closing from December 22-January 1, we hope all of our youth stay warm and get to enjoy the holidays surrounded by love, support, and acceptance.
Meet Tory, Our Housing Help Advocate!
Tory Kern
Outreach Coordinator for Home to Hope & YPI's Housing Advocate

Hello! My name is Tory Kern (she/they). I grew up in Rhode Island and love dogs, volleyball, basketball, art, the outdoors, and social justice. I believe in a world where housing is a basic human right, not a privilege that only some people are afforded.

I am the Outreach Coordinator at a new organization in Providence called Home to Hope. Our mission is to connect LGBTQ people struggling with housing to community resources. Home to Hope was created because 13-24-year-old LGBTQ people experience housing difficulties more often than their non-LGBTQ peers. Home to Hope can help by sharing information about resources related to education, employment, healthcare, and affordable housing. We also have toiletries, winter gear, snacks, and bus passes for young folks dealing with housing insecurity. Most importantly, we want to support people as they navigate life's challenges because we truly care about YOU.

Spending time at Youth Pride once a week has shown me the power of sharing space. We are not all born into supportive situations, so having a sanctuary like YPI is life-saving. I am honored to be a part of the YPI community.
Trans Miss Universe Contestant Makes History
The first Miss Universe pageant took place in 1952. Run by the American-based Miss Universe Organization, the 2018 pageant that took place December 16th in Bangkok, Thailand. This year, 9 4 different countries and territories sent competitors to the competition.

Until 2012, transgender women were barred from entering the competition. This year, history was made as an openly transgender women from Philas, Spain made it to the main pageant. Miss Spain, Angela Ponce, beat 22 other contenders for the country nomination. Although Ponce did not make it into the top 20, she danced the flamenco, strutted in her evening gown, and received a standing ovation from the audience upon turning over her sash.

Ponce was an outstanding competitor and inspiration for future equity and diversity in worldwide events. In a quote from her blog about her time at Miss Universe she states, "This is for you, for those who have no visibility, no voice, because we all deserve a world of respect, inclusion and freedom...And today I am here, proudly representing my nation, all women and human rights.”
Our Mission
Youth Pride, Inc. is dedicated to meeting the unique needs of youth and young adults impacted by sexual orientation and gender identity/expression while working to end the homophobic and transphobic environments in which they live, work and play.

LEADERSHIP:  YPI is committed to creating the leaders of today. Youth voices drive our process, and we seek to develop the leadership skills necessary both within the organization and outside of it.
AFFIRMATION:  YPI believes all youth must be affirmed for who they are and how they express themselves. We are committed to making that a reality in all of the environments in which young people live.
COMMUNITY:  YPI believes building strong connections is essential to youth success and empowerment. We strive to create a caring, respectful and diverse community of young people and adults.
Your tax-deductible donation helps YPI continue to do the important work we do in accordance to our mission. Your gift would be directly investing in our state's LGBTQ youth so that they may have a chance to share their gifts and light with the world.
Our Programs and Services
Youth Pride, Inc. serves over 700 Rhode Island LGBTQ youth and their straight allies a year through a variety of programs and services.
Our Center, located on Westminster Street in Providence, primarily serve as a drop-in and programming space, and is currently open to youth ages 13 to 23 on Tuesday and Wednesday from 3-8pm and Thursday from 3 to 5. Youth ages 9 to thirteen are welcome at our exclusive 13 and under drop-in time on Thursdays from 5-8 pm. All YPI Center services and activities are free to youth. YPI youth get to attend events, workshops, cultural, educational, social, and wellness activities at YPI and around the state.

Our center is home to a Basic Needs Pantry, open to youth in need of food, clothing, toiletries, and school supplies. We offer one on one counseling with in-house clinicians. Our clinicians facilitate and supervise three peer-support groups.

YPI also offers support to those who work with youth through policy and advocacy, and by providing professional development workshops and technical assistance to service providers and educators.

For more information on getting involved with YPI as a volunteer or if you or someone you know is in need of our services, contact
If you have a story you feel should be included in an upcoming newsletter, email