Rise Above Coffee is proud to be the LGBTQ+ Coffee that gives back, and each month, we feature a non-profit doing exceptional work in the LGBTQ+ community. This August, we’re shining a spotlight on the It Gets Better Project.
From Social Media Campaign to Global Movement
The It Gets Better Project is a 501(c)3 organization on a mission to uplift, empower and connect lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer youth around the globe. They envision a world where all LGBTQ+ youth are free to live equally and know their worthiness and power as individuals.
In 2010, the organization began as a social media campaign designed to share a simple message of hope and empowerment for LGBTQ+ youth: it gets better. This wildly successful campaign blossomed into a global movement of storytelling and community building, where people across the world share their stories of hope and encouragement with LGBTQ+ youth.
The It Gets Better Project is now a global non-profit that reaches millions of young people each year through inspirational media programs, educational resources, and access to community-based service providers in 19 affiliate countries.
To date, more than 70,000 videos have been created or shared through the It Gets Better Project. The video library on their website includes the It Gets Better original content series, plus thousands of It Gets Better videos shared by people around the globe. You can search for individual stories or browse categories that range from specific gender identities to celebs, sports and drag.
Here are just a few It Gets Better video stories we found inspiring:
- Amazin LeThi—a body builder working to make sports more inclusive for LGBTQ+ athletes
- Kyne Santos—a Queen bringing queer representation to STEM
- Zach Dishenger—the 17-year-old CEO changing the beauty industry
It Gets Better EDU
It Gets Better EDU exists to ensure that the stories they collect are available to LGBTQ+ youth wherever learning takes place. This happens through a variety of resources that are available for students and teachers.
EduGuides—A collection of free downloads for educators that include complete lesson plans, discussion questions, and fun activities.
imi—A mental health tool for LGBTQ+ teens, created by LGBTQ+ teens and their allies. The app is designed to help LGBTQ+ youth explore their identity and support their own mental health.
LGBTQ+ Glossary—A growing, evolving list designed to help LGBTQ+ youth understand the words often used by the LBGTQ+ community. The IGBP website suggests that “Words allow us to generate ideas, share stories, and learn and grow from others. They can help us better understand our world and communicate our perspective with others.”
Youth Voices—The It Gets Better official youth ambassador program. Each year, IGBP teams up with exceptional young people to bring unique stories and words of advice to other LGBTQ+ youth around the world.
It Gets Better Global
It Gets Better Global exists to bring the mission of IGBP to countries across the globe, and to support and ensure the success of the storytelling and community building efforts of their affiliates in other countries. Essentially, it is the world’s largest storytelling effort to empower LGBTQ+ young people where they live, work, and socialize.
Of the 70,000 videos in the It Gets Better collection, many originated outside the US. Additionally, nearly 40% of IGBP social media followers live outside the United States.
According to the It Gets Better Project, “These followers, video creators, and contributors have backgrounds diverse in nationality, language, culture, political viewpoint, and more. They’ve made this a truly global phenomenon from the beginning, and it’s important we meet them where they’re at, whenever and wherever we can.”
The result is a global family of storytellers and community builders spanning four continents, united under the same mission: to uplift, empower and connect LGBTQ+ youth around the globe.
Coffee for a Cause
In support of the It Gets Better Project, we’re introducing Love Is Love as our August #coffeeforacause. When you buy Love Is Love coffee during the month of August, a portion of the proceeds will be donated directly to the It Gets Better Project.