Community Resources For The Holiday Season

Graphic entitled "Community Resources"

The holiday season can be a time of joy and celebration, but it can also be a time when our health and wellbeing are at risk. For many LGBTQ+ people, who may face discrimination, rejection, and isolation from their families and communities. In addition to these external stressors, the holiday season can also bring its own set of mental health challenges, such as increased stress, loneliness, and depression. The DC Center has gathered a range of information to help you navigate the holiday season with your safety and mental health in mind.

If you are having an emergency please consider these options for assistance:

Emergency Shelter & Housing:

DC Shelter Hotline: (202)-399-7093 (24/7, provides free transportation) 

LGBTQ Shelter “Living Life” Alternative: 202-560-5457 | 400 50th St SE

Virginia Williams Family Resource Center: (202)-526-0017 (Women & Families) | 920-A Rhode Island Ave NE, 20018

Basic Needs (Showers, Laundry, Food, Etc.):

S.O.M.E. (So Others Might Eat) : (202) 797-8806 71 O St NW, 20001

Bread for the City: (202) 265-2400 1525 7th St. NW (Holiday Closures/Hours

Hunger Lifeline (202) 644-9807 , assistance in finding emergency food help

Thrive DC: (202) 737-9311 1525 Newton St NW Washington, DC 20010 | 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM | 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM

Mental Health / Substance Use/ Victimization Support: 

Local Services:

In the District you can get help 24/7 with a mental health crisis by calling 988

Maryland Mobile Crisis: (240)-777-4000   |      Virginia Mobile Crisis: (703)-573-5679

Substance Abuse Support and Referral Center (ARC): (202) 727-8473 75 P Street NE (enter on Florida Avenue near the P Street intersection)

The Triangle Club (LGBTQ+ Recovery Support): (202) 659-8641 1638 R St NW Suite 120, 20009  

NAMI DC Helpline: (202)-466-0972  Monday–Friday, 10 am – 6 pm EST

DC Victim Hotline: 844-4HELPDC (844-443-5732)

Nationwide:

SAGE National LGBT Elder Hotline(877)-360-5428 (24/7)

Trans Lifeline: (877)-565-8860

Trevor Lifeline (LGBTQ Folx under 25): (866)-488-7386 

LGBT National Help Center: 888-834-45644

IMAlive: Online Chat (24/7) OR  LGBT ADULT Crisis Text Line* – Text HOME to 741741

The National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233 (24/7, anonymous, confidential support)

The National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673

Holiday Support: 

DC Center “Xmas Day Hangout” : (Zoom link) December 25 @ 1pm – 2pm

Meet The Team: Matty Beard

Welcome Matty Beard (LGSW/MSW), our new Case Manager & Advocacy Specialist to the DC Center! Matty (they/them preferred) looks forward to being in person and connecting with the community. You can currently connect with Matty at the DC Center on Monday – Wednesday & Friday from 12-6pm. Matty is looking forward to working with the DC Anti-Violence Project (DCAVP) and being part of a team of beautiful, awesome queer people doing amazing things for the community.

Birthdate, Astro Sign

April 29th, 1992

Taurus Sun |  Aries Moon |  Libra Rising

Where are you originally from? 

Washington, DC

Why did you start working at the DC Center? 

Ultimately, to give back to the community and city that raised me and supported me when I needed it most. I come to the DC Center and community we serve with an emphasis in abolition, harm-reduction and dismantling of white supremacy.  I will be working closely with individuals and groups who are part of the LGBTQ+ community, especially those underserved, living with insecurities such as food, housing, substance abuse disorder/behavioral health needs, who regularly must interface with institutional systems of oppression. The process of navigating social services can often be (re)traumatizing and intentionally soul-crushing by design. Seeking help requires a lot of strength and resiliency as well as often requiring a person working within be that connection in gaining security.

As part of my role I will be: 

  1. available to the members of our community.  In-person & online. I am here to listen and can be reached at mattyb@thedccenter.org, or feel free to drop in anytime between 12-6pm M-W, F.
  2. a knowledgeable resource for people. There are often a plethora of resources in the form of assistance, support, funding and events that go unnoticed and underutilized. 
  3. active and responsive to the changing needs of the individuals and communities we serve. I will advocate and work with community members to create opportunities for their stories to be heard.  Also, providing critical education for people work with our community in dismantling professionalism, the importance of identity/gender-affirming care and work in anti-racism/decolonization.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

Joining the team in the years since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic has been a humbling reminder of how important community centers are. Just the ability to offer a consistent space for LGBTQ+ people has reminded me what pride personally feels like. Being available to talk with people in our community has already been incredibly rewarding. 

What is your music anthem? 

Gloria by Laura Branigan

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community? 

How my identity as a queer, non-binary has changed and evolved over time and my relationship to the community has as well. It often feels like what I’ve sought and needed the most from the community is adaptive and changes very fluidly. I feel lucky to have that in a community.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there? 

DuPont. Either hanging in the circle or walking down 17th between S & P St. This is something I’ve always done but have more appreciation for how connected it makes me feel as I have gotten older.  I love seeing older queer people, especially couples. It feels like a good reminder of how much I have already lived but also how much is still ahead. 

What is your favorite queer movie?  

Carol (2018)

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

I’m color-blind so probably not the best person to consult on a paint job. 

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

Our elders. I think queerness gets recontextualized every generation but there is so much that we can universally gain from looking up to older queer folks. I have a wealth of respect and admiration for those who came before and I feel lucky enough to have older community members that remind me regularly the importance of shared connection, and in the end, what really matters to me.