HISTORY/TRADITIONS

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National Youth Pride Services started out as a small group that met in the Gerber/Hart Library in Chicago, IL for movie nights. About 40 youth and 10 volunteers participated in its first year in 2003 thanks to help from a newly produced social media outlet called MSN Groups. October 23 is celebrated as our birthday.

NYPS Motto

The NYPS Motto was created by Otis Richardson. In its early stages, every member had to learn it by heart. It is still used today by members in several cities where NYPS has a strong membership:

Who I am is not a lifestyle choice. I was born this way and will rejoice.

Some of us are lucky to have family that accepts us. Those who don’t make our own because we must.

I was made in the image of perfection. Those who stand in judgement should check their own reflection.

I will protect myself because I am worth it.

I will reach my goals and will not quit.

Colors

The color RED has been associated with NYPS for years. It is usually a required color for members to wear on trips and at events where many groups are present. The official colors however are red and gold. Red was chosen because it represents blood. Just like blood runs through the body to make everything work, youth run through the organization and make it work. Gold was chosen because NYPS youth regularly win awards and honors and is generally considered the place for some of America’s best and brightest young adults.

NYPS is known for producing award – winning youth and young adults. We currently are the only LGBTQ youth organization that works with predominantly black youth, with two Colin Higgins Award Winners. Traditionally, our members who stick with us and obtain leadership positions go on to win some type of nomination or awards (national and international). Since 2007 when we were selected to go to D.C. for the National Youth Advocacy Coalition’s (NYAC) National Best Practices Summit for our “Caution” campaign, we have continued to produce and support award winning, black LGBTQ youth through our home grown programs.

 

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DeAndre Roberts (Nevada) was nominated for 12 different awards in the 6 months he worked on one of our campaigns. He went on to be come our first ever International award winner when he was named to YSA’s 25 Most Influential Youth In the World List.

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D’ontace Keys (Philadelphia) became the second NYPS related Colin Higgins Award Winner ($10,000 cash prize)

The first person we ever nominated, who became a Colin Higgins Award winner in 2008 can be viewed on the Colin Higgins Youth Courage Award Website. (we are not posting their name out of respect for the individual – it does not mean we do not appreciate their contributions to the LGBTQ community.)

National Youth Pride Services,

Chicago, IL 60601

Phone. 773-YPS-8051