GAY YOUTH MILWAUKEE (GYM) began in 1979 and has served as a support and social group primarily for Milwaukee area gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth in high school by providing a safe place for them to meet and discuss their issues and concerns.
GYM is devoted to promoting health, inspiring dignity, self esteem and pride and developing advocacy among GLBT youth through a safe environment. The hundreds of youth served over the years include a very diverse ethnic and cultural representation.
Some youth identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender upon entering GYM ; others may be questioning their orientation . Most are not "out" to their parents, family or friends. However, within a short time, many will have disclosed to their family or friends.
Many youth have had the opportunity to advocate for their concerns by participating in workshop panels, attending conferences and networking with other youth and youth advocates, participating in television videotape productions and by being published in news articles concerning various GLBTQ youth issues. These opportunities have empowered the youth in their sexual identity development while simultaneously establishing them as role models for other and new GLBTQ youth.
The Gay Youth Wisconsin Hotline, Wisconsin's first statewide toll-free hotline for and by by gay youth was initially funded in June 1996. It is a collaboration including Gay Youth Milwaukee, Diverse and Resilient Project of the Wisconsin AIDS/HIV Program, BESTD Clinic and the Aids Resource Center of Wisconsin (ARCW). It has also been supported through grants from the Wisconsin AIDS Fund and Cream City Foundation. Gay Youth Wisonsin Hotline is a program that is intended to address the HIV prevention needs of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth ages 12-21.
Gay Youth Wisconsin Hotline attempts to confront the primary barrier to a young person who is "coming out" - isolation. By providing safe access for GLBTQ youth to connect with their peers, the hotline can provide that first step in reducing the risk of HIV infection by directly impacting the barriers of fear and isolation. The hotline also provides young callers with information and referrals to resources statewide.
Gay Youth Wisconsin Hotline operates
Friday and Saturday Evenings from 7pm-11PM.Trained volunteer youth phone operators are standing by to take your calls.
On-Line Resources for GLBTQ Youth
Oasis monthly online GLBT youth Magazine
Outproud Online Group, PFLAG and GLSEN resourees
YouthArts Project- online GLBT youth art.
The Ultimate Gay Youth Homepage.
The Advocate Magazine online.
Gay/Lesbian/Straight Education Network - GLSEN
Rainbow Club at UWM
National Youth Advocacy Coalitiom