Cyndi Lauper is such a tireless champion for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth–her work through her True Colors Fund, her audacious Give a Damn campaign, the NY home for homeless youth she founded, and her new organization Forty to None are all incredibly inspirational. In America, estimates range from 600,000 to 1.5 million homeless minors living on our streets and in shelters, and up to 40% of those identify as gay or transgender. Queer young people are exponentially more likely to attempt/succeed committing suicide, and, of course, bullying is off the charts. If your brain can stretch to imagine the hell of being a targeted young person, then add to that the weight of having been kicked out of your home, ostracized, possibly excommunicated from your place of worship, or voluntarily running away from home and unbearable situations, your stretched brain is going to hurt. Now imagine living it 24/7.
The Forty to None Project is the first national program exclusively dedicated to bringing an end to the epidemic of homelessness among LGBT youth–bringing that astronomical and unacceptable percentage from 40 percent, to none. The project is a newborn, but has huge and lofty goals in the areas of education, advocacy, empowerment, capacity building, and inclusion. Get yourself educated, get involved, and get kids off the streets. There are no red/blue divisions on this issue, no donkeys and elephants, just humanity, uniting us all.