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At Room & Board we are passionate about giving back through partnerships with non-profit organizations that support strengthening homes and families, social service agencies committed to the care of those affected by AIDS, institutions with a passion for art and design, and environmental organizations that support our commitment to sustainability. Through this Community Partner program, our stores and delivery centers are empowered to actively research and choose organizations they’d like to support through volunteerism.

Our New York Market choose The Ali Forney Center as their community partner back in August of 2011. The Ali Forney Center is based in New York City and aims to protect LGBTQ youth from the harms of homelessness and empower them with the tools they need to live independently. The center was founded in 2002 by Carl Siciliano in memory of Ali Forney, a gender non-conforming teen who fled his home at the age of 13 and lost his life in 1997.

Today, Ali Forney has grown to become the largest agency dedicated to LGBTQ homeless youth in the country, aiding nearly 1,400 youth per year. Assistance ranges from housing to meals to medical and mental health services. In addition, the youth can take advantage of education programs geared toward helping them develop the skills necessary to gain employment and become independent adults.

Since selecting The Ali Forney Center as their community partner, our New York store teams have supported their efforts in a variety of ways, including, but not limited to, painting, planning fundraisers and hosting workshops.

According to Abbie Gonzalez, a Leadership Associate in our Chelsea store, “Our involvement has been tremendously meaningful to the New York team. From volunteering for a day of service where we would paint, design and stage transitional housing spaces, to hosting workshops in the showroom for students participating in the LEAP (The Learning, Education, Advancement and Placement) program, our partnership has grown and sustained for the past six years.”

Ali Forney volunteers

Members of the New York team beautifying a common space at The Ali Forney Center

Volunteering for our community partner The Ali Forney Center

Prepping to paint at a transitional living space

Interested in supporting The Ali Forney Center? Check out the volunteer opportunities page to get involved.

Photos by Room & Board and The Ali Forney Center

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