Initiatives

Better Together Fund

The Better Together Fund provides a way to help respond to the needs of our community, now and in the time to come, after the effects of the Pulse nightclub tragedy.
The fund supports four key areas:

-Gaps in the support nonprofits are providing to survivors and families
-LGBTQ, Latino, faith and other affected communities
-Underlying causes of this tragic event (not policy and advocacy)
-Other needs we cannot anticipate until we face them

Grant-Making

May 2018

  • $25,150 to Valencia College Foundation for the Peace and Justice Institute Academy for teachers at the Peace and Justice Institute at Valencia College

April 2018

  • Up to $100,000 to the One Orlando Alliance to hire an executive director at $50,000 a year for over two years, plus matching funds from the Contigo Fund. Year two funds are contingent upon performance outcomes.

February 2018

  • $35,000 to Equality Florida to expand the Central Florida Safe and Healthy Schools Program

August 2017

  • Up to $120,000 to Heart of Florida United Way to continue meeting the emergency needs for Pulse Tragedy survivors and family members through February 2018.
  • Up to $50,000 to Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association to cover the cost of Lawyer’s Professional Liability Insurance for attorneys and staff and pro bono/volunteer services for ongoing free legal services related to the Pulse tragedy. LGBTQ legal clinics with volunteer and staff lawyers will provide powers of attorney, wills and designation of health care surrogates, and transgender name changes.

May 2017

  • Up to $91,854 to Two Spirit Health Services to provide gap funding for the infrastructure for mental health services that will be funded for three years by the Department of Justice
  • $50,000 to Heart of Florida United Way to provide gap funds for emergency needs to primary and secondary survivors of the Pulse tragedy and their family members

April 2017

  • $30,000 to Equality Florida to hire a Central Florida Safe and Healthy Schools Coordinator. The coordinator will launch this program in the Orange, Seminole, and Osceola County Public Schools and will coordinate activities to ensure the safe and equal treatment of LGBTQ students.
  • $5,000 to The 49 Fund at Central Florida Foundation to provide educational scholarships
  • $5,000 to Orlando Youth Alliance to provide educational scholarships
  • $5,000 to Valencia Foundation to provide educational scholarships through the Pulse Memorial Foundation
  • $5,000 to Zebra Coalition to provide educational scholarships through the Jefferson R. Voss Education Fund
  • $5,000 to UCF Foundation to provide educational scholarships through the Dively-Dupuis LGBTQ Leadership Award

December 2016

  • $10,000 to Pulse of Orlando to develop a plan and strategy to formalize the One Orlando Alliance.
  • $10,000 to Pulse of Orlando to provide on-going technical assistance to implement the strategy for the One Orlando Alliance.
  • Up to $7,000 to Barry University Center for Human Rights and Social Justice to provide cultural competency training for LGBTQ+ Affirmative Care to mental health and community providers in two full-day sessions.

November 2016

  • $50,000 to the Friends Talking Faith radio show with The Three Wise Guys to talk about how members of the community have been personally transformed by the events at Pulse and a series of community conversations to spread the stories.
  • $6,000 to the Trauma Resource Institute to train lay leaders across our community on the biological response of trauma using the Community Resiliency Model.
  • $35,000 will be awarded to Trauma Resource Institute to offer a four-day “train the trainer” session. These skills will help participants heal themselves and help community members. (Awarded upon successful completion of the grant listed above)

October 2016

  • $1,500 to the Mental Health Association of Central Florida to provide mental health care for primary, secondary, and community survivors of the Pulse tragedy through weekly support groups.
  • Up to $7,000 to Barry University to provide cultural competency training for LGBTQ+ Affirmative Care to mental health and community providers in three full day sessions.
  • Up to $50,000 to Heart of Florida United Way to provide gap mental healthcare to primary survivors of the Pulse tragedy and their family members in collaboration with Two Spirit and Hispanic Family Counseling.

September 2016

  • $50,000 to Heart of Florida United Way for rent, utilities, and/or mental health care for pulse survivors and their families administered through the Orlando United Assistance Center.

August 2016

  • $122,000 to Heart of Florida United Way to support those directly impacted by the Pulse tragedy with basic needs, like rent, mortgage, utilities or other monthly expenses. This first phase of grant-making focuses on immediate needs such as rent assistance for survivors and families until they receive compensation from the OneOrlando Fund and long-term mental health services.

Photo credit: Chris Stephenson