Launched in 2017, SIGBI is inspired by the struggles and ideals of the LGBTQ rights movement born from the Stonewall Inn Rebellion of 1969 though its awareness campaigns, educational programming, fundraising and candid public dialogue.
«We are excited to once again partner with Jet Blue and Brooklyn Brewery to support The Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative. The Initiative supports grass roots organisations across the country and especially those in places where equality has been slow to arrive», said Stacy Lentz, Co-owner of the Stonewall Inn and CEO of the Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative. «With their generous support the Initiative is able to do the much-needed work of helping some of the most undeserved LGBTQ communities».
This year, in response to the devastating hurricane in Puerto Rico, SIGBI will highlight the work of Proyecto Matria www.proyectomatria.org, which works to advance the equity of LGBTQ communities from two areas: human rights activism and the offering of services in the field of economic development and housing. Matria also has educational programs to train other organisations, public agencies and communities on how to stop discrimination against LGBTQ people and create safe spaces from an equity perspective.
«Being one of the organisations selected by SIGBI for their fundraising campaign is a gift of solidarity for Matria at a time when the rights of LGBTQ people in Puerto Rico are in constant threat. Our work is important and urgent for the lives of those we serve», said Amarilis Pagan Jimenez, Executive Director of Proyecto Matria, who will be a part of the evening’s program.
SIGBI will also announce two major campaigns:
The inaugural Stonewall Auction, running now through June 12th on Charitybuzz is offering once in a lifetime celebrity experiences and items for bid. Also, the Stonewall Inn Ambassadors, a cohort of activists, celebrities, and influencers, who will work together to elevate awareness and support for SIGBI over the next 12 months and through the 50th anniversary of Stonewall on June 28, 2019. Stonewall Inn Ambassadors include Chelsea Clinton, Bryan Lourd, Laverne Cox, Robbie Rogers, Geena Rocero and Cleve Jones.
Both campaigns are programs of Pride Live Nation, www.pridelivenation.org.
During the reception, there will be a performance by Michael Blume and remarks by featured speaker Chely Wright.
Indie/soul artist Michael Blume has released his latest songs “R U Mad” and “Blunder” – from his upcoming EP Cynicism & Sincerity, which will be out June 8th via S-Curve Records. The songs are available now at all digital music outlets, including Spotify, Apple/iTunes, and Amazon.
The forthcoming EP release comes following a whirlwind year for Blume. Since arriving on the scene in 2015, New York-based singer, songwriter, and artist Michael Blume has consistently delivered daring, diverse, and dynamic anthems blurring the lines between simmering and soaring. He’s attracted acclaim from Rolling Stone, GQ, Nylon, Ladygunn, Pigeons & Planes, Earmilk, and Dujour and turned the uninitiated into believers at Governor’s Ball, Firefly, Lollapalooza, and will be performing at the Bonnaroo Music Arts Festival on June 10th.
Chely Wright www.chely.com rose to fame as a commercial country singer in the 90’s and has since released eight studio albums and charted more than 15 singles on the Billboard charts. The Academy of Country Music named Wright «Top New Female Vocalist of 1995».
Chely made history by being the first country music star to publicly come out as gay, which she revealed in her 2010 memoir entitled “Like Me.” In 2016, she released her latest critically-acclaimed studio album entitled I Am the Rain. Currently, Chely is working on a new studio EP as well as a holiday EP, both of which are bring crowdfunded though PledgeMusic. www.pledgemusic.com/projects/chely-wright.
Representatives from JetBlue and Brooklyn Brewery will also be a part of the program.
«With a mission to inspire humanity and as New York’s Hometown Airline, JetBlue is proud to support and celebrate the LGBT community and the important work of the Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative (SIGBI)», said Ryan Berry, JetPride Co-Chair, JetBlue.«For nearly a half century the Stonewall Inn has stood as a symbol of equality and inclusion and we are honoured to help them foster tolerance and acceptance in communities well beyond our New York home».
Brooklyn Brewery Brew master, Garrett Oliver,«Last year we proudly made a special beer to help kick off The Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative to support the LGBTQ community. This year we’re glad to be back to help keep this important effort going and to celebrate The Stonewall Uprising’s upcoming 50th Anniversary. It’s time to amp up the waves of love and change that have emanated from this place for five decades. Brooklyn Brewery stands with everyone who wants to see the world live and love freely».