Community gives back during Charlotte Pride Weekend of Service
Pictured above: Volunteers pose for a group photo after offering support at the Urban Farm at Aldersgate on Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021.
More than a dozen volunteer service projects and events with more than 300 participating community members dotted the city’s landscape on the weekend that would have been Charlotte Pride’s 20th anniversary event on Aug. 21-22. Altogether, the events marked the first Charlotte Pride Weekend of Service, an opportunity for LGBTQ community members to stand in support and solidarity with each other as the city continues to face the consequences of the continued pandemic and economic downturn.
At Charlotte Pride, we believe Pride is more than a once-annual event, party, street festival, or parade. There’s certainly nothing wrong with a party! “All work and no play…” as the old saying goes. But Pride also means service, support, care, kindness, and the proactive building of a collective community in which all are empowered to live our full lives and full selves.
That’s why we organized this year’s first-ever Weekend of Service. It felt right to plan a collective give-back event on the weekend we would have hosted the annual festival and parade. Pandemic restrictions and all the uncertainty that comes with them may have prevented us from hosting our community’s largest once-annual way to celebrate and empower each other, but it wasn’t going to stop us and our mission to support our broader community!
We are so thrilled that community members and organizations stepped up to the plate. A dozen groups signed up to host their own service projects and events! Together with Charlotte Pride’s two projects, more than 300 people participated in acts of service and kindness, including school and clothing supply drives, letter writing to elders, a Habitat home project, a health and wellness event, school playground and classroom clean-up, community farm support, a local road clean-up, and more!
The pandemic has taught us many lessons. Chief among them is just how important it is to care for each other and our collective community. Charlotte Pride is incredibly grateful for the community members and organizations who came together in solidarity during the Charlotte Pride Weekend of Service. You’ve all made a direct impact and difference in our local community. Thank you! We can’t wait to make the Charlotte Pride Weekend of Service an annual community tradition!
Many thanks go out to the following community organizations who participated in the Charlotte Pride Weekend of Service: Amity Medical Group, Avant Wellness, Charlotte Area Drag Queen Story Hour, Gender Education Network, Indivisible NC District 9, Moms Demand Action Charlotte, One Voice Chorus, PNC Bank, Queer Society Charlotte, Regions Bank, Trane Technologies, Transcend Charlotte, and the UNC Charlotte Office of Identity, Equity, and Engagement.
Charlotte Pride extends a special note of thanks to our partners who assisted with our hosted service projects. Thank you to the Carolina Farm Trust, Urban Farm and Aldersgate, and Keep Mecklenburg Beautiful.