Happy Pride Month! 😍🏳️🌈
We’re proud to be an organization that serves LGBTQ+ youth and young people at-risk, with staff who are, themselves, members of the community.
To celebrate #Pride month 2021 and our work with LGBTQ+ youth, we’ll bring you stories from our teens in Israel, who we serve without judgement or prejudice. We love them all and they are truly inspiring! Follow us on social media for more stories later in the month.
“About a year ago, when I was still in the closet, I was really scared of telling my family that I was a lesbian. I was afraid of how my mom and my older brother would react, because this wasn’t exactly accepted in the house I grew up in.
I decided to open my heart, and to share, first and foremost with the ELEM staff at the center in my town which I attend regularly.
They were incredible. They listened, supported, encouraged. They were there for me. Sharing something so personal helped me bond with some of the volunteers in a major way. They were with me on this journey and heard about all the fears of coming out.
Slowly but surely, I started coming out to everyone – my family, my friends, the people closest to me. I’m happy to say they accepted me the way I am and didn’t judge.
I’m glad I took this step, glad I chose this path during such an important time in my life. I had the privilege of first sharing it with people who work at a center where a pride flag is on display all year round, and where we talk about sexuality openly all the time. I knew I made a wise decision, the right decision. And I’m so, so lucky that there’s support available to me. That I have people to talk to and count on.”
S., a 17 years old girl at one of ELEM’s centers.