The Boards of Stonewall Columbus and Family Pride Network announced a merger of the two organizations and governing structures.
“We are thrilled with this opportunity to consolidate services under one organization; a move that will increase impact and connection for the LGBTQ+ community,” said Gerry Rodriguez, Stonewall Board President.
Family Pride Network brings to Stonewall Columbus experience in supporting LGBTQ+ families through their family creation process, providing resources and trainings explaining the pathways available through assisted reproduction, adoption, and foster care. With the merger complete the continuing organization will operate under Stonewall Columbus with Family Pride Network becoming a program of Stonewall Columbus.
“The Board is excited about the opportunity to join forces with Stonewall Columbus in further extending the resources to provide a welcoming and supportive community for LGBTQ+ parents and their children, intended parents, and any family that has children that identify as LGBTQ+,” said Joe Matessa, co-founder and Board President of Family Pride Network. “It’s crucial that the children of LGBTQ+ parents have a safe space to engage with their peers and gain a deeper sense of self-confidence in knowing that there are other kids who have families that look like theirs. Equally as important is the opportunity for children that identify as LGBTQ+ and their families to see themselves someday having a loving committed relationship with children of their own. Supporting LGBTQ+ families is paramount in preserving Columbus’ identity as an inclusive, friendly and vibrant city. With Stonewall’s renewed focus on making space for all identities in the LGBTQ+ community to thrive, the consolidation is in perfect alignment with both organizations’ vision for the future.”
Founded in 2014, Family Pride Network serves to connect and support children, families, and prospective parents in the LGBTQ+ community through social events, educational programs, and professional resources. They annually hosts the Pathways to Parenthood conference which will continue under the consolidation—this year scheduled virtually for April 18.
“We are excited to add this focus to our program offerings as we better serve those in the LGBTQ+ community looking for various resources in the Central Ohio region and across state,” said Densil Porteous, Stonewall’s new executive Director.
- Learn more about Family Pride Network by visiting their website.