DC Center Reopening FAQ

As we reopen, the DC Center is doing our best to meet the needs of our community while creating a safe environment for our staff, volunteers, and visitors. Please see below some of the information available about our space, our meetings, and other questions. We will update this information as necessary as the situation changes or we understand better what information people are looking for.

 

What are The DC Center’s hours of operation?

  • Mondays through Fridays from 12pm to 6pm
  • Saturdays from 11am to 3pm
  • Sundays is closed

 

Are support groups/meetings meeting in-person, virtually or hybrid?

Based on surveys and conversations with peer group facilitators and participants and abiding by social distancing guidelines, we are offering a hybrid (physical with webstation for Zoom) option for some while a completely virtual option for others, at each groups’ discretion.

 

Which groups/meetings, and when, are offering a hybrid (in-person with webstation) meeting option? (This list subject to change as groups choose to return to the DC Center’s offices)

Mondays: Coffee & Conversation from 10am to 12pm.

2nd Tuesday: Coming Out Group from 7 to 8:30pm.

3rd Saturday: KhushDC from 1:30 to 3:30pm.

 

Which groups/meetings, and when, are offering a virtual (Zoom) only meeting option?

Mondays: Center Aging Coffee Drop-In from 10am to 12pm
1st Monday of the Month: Center Aging Advocacy Meeting from 12:30 to 1:30pm.

2nd Tuesday: Trans Support Group from 7 to 9pm.
4th Tuesday: GenderQueer (with ASL) from 7 to 8pm.

1st, 3rd, 5th or last Wednesday: Job Club from 6 to 7pm.

5th or last Thursday: Queer Book Club from 7 to 9pm.

Fridays: Friday Tea Time from 2 to 4pm.
4th Friday: Women in their 20s & 30s (with ASL) from 8 to 9pm.

3rd Saturday: POC (People of Color) Support Group from 1 to 3pm.


Can I just walk-in to participate in a hybrid support group/meeting?

Currently, the Center is unable to accommodate walk-ups for peer support groups. Registration in advance will be required for peer support group meetings. Information in this regard will be circulated among peer support group leaders and participants as well as be listed on the Center’s website.

 

Are therapy meetings still being offered at the Center?

At this time the therapy meeting space is not being utilized, in the meanwhile seasons are being held virtual until 2022 and will be reevaluated at the beginning of the year.

 

When is the Center expected to open back up and what are some of the processes?

  • Monday October 4th; Monday through Friday 12 to 6pm; Saturday 11 to 3pm.
  • CyberSation social distance with three separate computers.
  • Peer and Support groups able to offer hybrid options depending on the comfort level of members and facilitators STARTING on the 13th. Option to sign up and come to join the Zoom meeting.
  • Mental Health services are to remain virtual at this time.
  • The Library and Lounge will have social distancing with fewer seats available to accommodate social distancing.
  • New and expanding clothing closet and food pantry for those in need of clothes and food.
  • The Art Gallery is opening up Saturday October 2nd with new artists. Art will be up for the next three months so it can be seen.

 

Now that the Center is reopening again, what kind of opportunities are available for those in the community who would like to get involved?

  • The best way to stay current with the Center’s activities is to subscribe to our newsletter int our website which comes out every week. This includes volunteer opportunities, information about art installation, monthly programs, and all different social media accounts to get news updates.
  • Volunteers wanting to become a support group facilitator are provided with the necessary training.
  • Joining a support group is the best way to stay connected to the Center and others in the community.
  • There is an events volunteer list to help in events like help preparing to open before events.
  • Members of the community can also join a board committee to help and learn how the Center works.

 

What will be the mitigation efforts to reopen the Center back safely?

  • Self-screenings will ask questions with regards to health symptoms.
  • Per DC law all staff are required to be vaccinated. However, proof of vaccinations or recent test are not going to be asked from community members.
  • In the center social distance practices and mask wearing will be mandated.
  • Peer support groups are being offered in hybrid format so those who are not feeling well do not feel obligated to come into the Center.
  • In accordance with CDC guidelines contact-tracing will be implemented so signup sheets will be mandatory for all who visit the center with their name, phone number and email address.
  • 2 portable air filters have been purchased for the DC Center’s meeting space. They are rated to filter down to .01 microns in size.

 

Are masks required at the Center?

Per CDC guidelines all staff/participants (2yrs or older) physically at the building are required to always wear masks to stop the spreading of COVID-19.

 

What will happen if either staff or participants test positive for COVID-19?

  • The Center will be closed until a full deep cleaning is completed.
  • Staff present/exposed will be asked to quarantine and work remotely until such time as they can provide a negative non-rapid COVID test, per CDC guidelines.
  • Participants/guests who visited 3-4 days prior will be notified of the potential exposure and be asked to contact the DC Center if they are showing symptoms.

 

Will social distancing be enforced at the Center?

The maximum number of people in the DC Center at one time has been adjusted to a maximum of 25 to 30 to accommodate enough space for social distancing.

 

What kind of sanitation procedures will be implemented to prevent the spread of the COVID-19?

  • Sneeze Guards will be installed at the Cyber Center and front desk, as well as 6-foot distance floor markers.
  • A sanitation station will be set up outside the Center that includes wipes/sanitizer, gloves, mask and health self-assessment.
  • Using a clean pen and used pen system, all who enter the Center will need to fill out a log for contact tracing purposes with information such as name, phone number and email address.
  • Cleaning and sanitation procedures will be implemented more frequently throughout the day.
  • Air purification system will be provided for various spaces within the Center.

 

If I am unwilling or unable to comply with mask mandates, will I be turned away from the Center?

To enter the DC Center, you will be asked to wear a mask. If someone is unwilling or unable to wear a mask and/or mentions health issues, assistance will be provided to them outside the DC Center in the Atrium to the best of our staff’s ability. We ask that everyone consider that many people come through the DC Center on a regular basis, so it’s important to make sure everyone is protecting the community by doing what we can. 

 

If rates of COVID continue to rise in DC will the Center remain open?

Federal and local guidelines will be closely monitored and adhered to, up to and including closing the Center due to an increase in COVID cases in the DC area to ensure the safety of our employees and constituents.

We Are Closed In Observance Of Juneteenth

 

The DC Center will be closed on June 19, 2020 in observance of Juneteenth

and

to support the #StrikeForBlackLives. #BlackLivesMatter

If you are facing a life threatening situation or seeking immediate care:

DC Mobile Crisis: 202-673-9300
DC Shelter Hotline: 202.399.7093 or 311
Maryland Mobile Crisis: 240-777-4000
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255
Trans Lifeline: 877-565-8860
LGBTQ under 25: Trevor Lifeline: 866-488-7386
LGBTQ National Help Center (all ages – various lines/hours): 888-843-4564 www.glbthotline.org

 

DC Center – Closed Effective 3/16/20

Image of the Coronavirus and the works COVID-19

Taking guidance and recommendations about social distancing from the DC government and the CDC, effective Monday, March 16th, The DC Center for the LGBT Community’s office will be closed. Staff are still working remotely, and will be checking emails and voicemails multiple times each day. Please reach out to supportdesk@thedccenter.org to connect with the DC Center, as we are still able to provide services and support.

If you are interested in attending support groups remotely, please reach out to your facilitator or supportdesk@thedccenter.org and we can provide options for remote meetings using conference lines.

The situation is changing rapidly, please refer to the CDC’s website and coronavirus.dc.gov for up-to-date information on what you can do to help prevent and slow the spread of the coronavirus. 

The DC Center team will be meeting regularly to assess the situation and rest assured that we will open as soon as it is safe to do so, as we know that many of our clients and participants are vulnerable and will need support. If you are able, please consider donating and supporting organizations that provide food, medicine, and other support to marginalized populations. 

 

If you are facing a life threatening situation or seeking immediate care:

DC Mobile Crisis: 202-673-9300
DC Shelter Hotline: 202.399.7093 or 311
Maryland Mobile Crisis: 240-777-4000
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255
Trans Lifeline: 877-565-8860
LGBTQ under 25: Trevor Lifeline: 866-488-7386
LGBTQ National Help Center (all ages – various lines/hours): 888-843-4564 www.glbthotline.org

 

DesiQ Diaspora Call For Proposals

Desi Queer Diaspora

NQAPIA is currently accepting proposals for Desi Queer Diaspora (DQD) 2020, to be held in Austin, Texas from May 15-17, 2020. Proposals will be accepted from August 12, 2019 until December 1st, 2019 at 11:59pm EST. Late proposals may be considered at the discretion of the DQD planning committee.

The term proposals references everything from discussion circles, movie showings, workshops, presentations, classes, panels  and much more. Proposals may address a wide variety of topics, and we welcome proposals from anyone who identifies as queer and/or tgnc and traces their family ancestry to South Asia and the diaspora. As you develop your proposal, please keep in mind that sessions will be 90 minutes.

Proposals will be reviewed by a team of DQD steering committee members and members of the conference proposal review committee. As we review proposals, we are committed to developing a conference schedule that covers a wide variety of interest to the community, as reflected in our community survey as well as session presenters that are representative of our community across class, caste, country of origin, religion, gender identity, gender expression, sex characteristics, and sexual orientation. NQAPIA also plan to organize specific panels to represent and reflect on the diversity of our community.

NQAPIA will let you know whether your proposal was accepted (or not) by February 1st, 2020. We will be accepting 27 workshops total. We ask that you accept the offer to present at the conference by February 15th, 2020. If you present at the conference, we will offer free registration. Note that for each session, there is a maximum of two presenters. If your proposal is not initially accepted, you may be placed on a waitlist and eventually be asked to present if other presenters drop out.

Find out more at: desiqdiaspora.org

API Movie Nights

Join the DC Mayor’s Office on Asian & Pacific Islander Affairs for a Movie Night Series! The movies will take place at Chinatown Park located on 5th and Mass Ave. NW. Please RSVP at 2019asianmovienights.eventbrite.com

Movies Include: 

Aug 23rd: Swing Kids

Aug 30th: Crazy Rich Asians

Sep 6th: Bend It Like Beckham

Sep 13th: Monkey King: Hero is Back

 

 

A Day in the Queer Life of Asian Pacific America

A Day in the Queer Life

A Day in the Queer Life of Asian Pacific America (ADQLAPA) is a new digital exhibition by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center (APAC) documenting queer life in Asian American and Pacific Islander communities throughout the country.

An extension of APAC’s 2014 digital exhibition A Day in the Life of Asian Pacific America, ADQLAPA borrows the former exhibition’s attention to the everyday, its notion of examining life all across Asian Pacific America, including lesser-known geographic pockets and lesser-known dimensions of experience. ADQLAPA features both solicited and crowd-sourced media—video shorts, photography, boomerangs, video poems, and a longform essay—divided into several channels, to offer multiple entry points and a nuanced engagement with queer Asian American and Pacific Islander life.

View the Online Exhibit Here

Diverse City Fund Grant Opportunities

The Diverse City Fund has opened grant applications for the spring of 2019!

The Diverse City Fund works to nurture community leaders and grassroots projects which are acting to transform DC into a more just, vibrant place to live. Through grantmaking, the Diverse City Fund identifies, supports, and connects people in communities of color who are engaged in change work.

They support the development of community-level social change by funding projects that have less access to traditional funding sources.

Funding priorities for this grant cycle are directed toward:

  • Groups that might not get funded by traditional funders, e.g. groups that are small, new volunteer-led, politically radical or activist initiatives, etc.
  • Coalitions / alliances
  • Mobilizations for protests and resistance
  • Organizing and advocacy, and
  • Healing, mental health and cultural liberation work that brings people of color together and prepares people to resist.

For further details and instructions on how to apply please visit the grants page at the Diverse City Fund website.

Meet the Staff: Matt

Matt

Meet the new Social Media and Advocacy intern Matt! This summer, Matt will be handling the various social media duties at the DC Center, as well as working with the Youth Working Group to help put LGBT youth in the foster care system into more welcoming and accepting homes.

Birthdate, Astro Sign

June 2, Gemini.

Where are you originally from?

I’m originally from the Bay Area in California and currently go to school in Los Angeles.

Why did you start working at the DC Center?

I started working as an intern at the DC Center because I am passionate about helping the LGBTQ community. I wanted to work at a place where I could feel that I am making an immediate impact on the community, and the DC Center is a great place to do that. Also, I was really intrigued about all the different LGBT arts events and support groups the DC Center offers.

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

Although I just started working at the DC Center, I have really enjoyed getting to know all the staff members and learning more and more about the fun and unique events and opportunities that the DC Center offers the community.

What is your music anthem?

It changes all the time but currently it is probably “The Middle” by Zedd.

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?

My favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community is how welcoming and enthusiastic the people are and that I know I always have a home within the community.

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

My favorite spot in DC would probably be the Lincoln Memorial at night. I like to walk around and reflect on my thoughts.

What is your favorite queer movie?

Call Me by Your Name.

What clothing item is a staple in your wardrobe?

My white Converse. I wear them everywhere.

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

I kind of like it white because it reminds me of watching Cory in the House as a kid, but I would paint it rainbow if I had to choose a different color!

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

Alison Bechdel.

 

Meet the Staff – Zhengxu Jin

Birthdate, Astro Sign
September 4, Virgo
Why did you start working at the DC Center?
As a member of the LGBT community myself, I’d love to make an impact and improve the conditions for other members of the community.
What is your music anthem?
Shake it off
What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?
It is very diverse community. People from different places, of different skin colors and ages united together to fight for a common goal. it is unbelievable.
What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?
Georgetown for sure. I enjoy walking around in Georgetown when the weather is nice. I sit by the water, I go to get cupcake and ice cream, and sometimes I do some shopping too!
What do you think the LGBTQ+ community needs to improve on?
Cross acceptance. This means people need to focus more on their inner self than their appearance. It also means that we should look beyond one’s race, look, and mannerism (whether it is feminine or masculine.) We don’t deserve to be labelled and stereotyped as a superficial community.
What is your favorite Queer movie?
Love, Simon.
What has been your favorite moment while working in the DC Center?
The moment that I realized all my hard work will pay off because I am doing something for a good cause.
What clothing item is a staple in your wardrobe?
Vintage leather or jean jackets!
What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?
Rainbow!
Who do you most look up to in the queer community?
George Takei. He takes pride in being who he is and his posts are hilarious yet educating.

Interest Survey: Support Group for LGBTQ People of Color

Link: https://goo.gl/forms/ijfWRtO16wk63JFv1

The DC Center for the LGBT Community is considering starting a support group for LGBTQ people of color. The aim of this group is to support and address the issues that people of color in the LGBTQ communities may be struggling.

We are excited about this opportunity, and we hope you are, too! Please take a few minutes to answer the questions. Your responses will help us gauge general interest and help shape the structure of the support group.

Link: https://goo.gl/forms/ijfWRtO16wk63JFv1

If you have any questions or suggestions, please also feel free to email Ping, ping@thedccenter.org.

 

Photo credit: What’s Happening Tulsa