Thankfully, Chely Wright is forging ahead to make herself a real voice for LGBT people in the world, and especially in more rural and red parts of America, where her country ties lay. Wright is a spokesperson for and the founder of Like Me, an organization that provides assistance and education to LGBT people, as well as their friends and family. And now that organization, named after the singer's memoir, has announced a scholarship for the people it hopes to reach.
Wright announced the award recipient on "The Nate Berkus Show" on Wednesday. The first scholarship prize will be given to Shawn Walsh, the brother of Seth Walsh, who committed suicide in September after facing rampant anti-gay bullying in his California school district. As you may have seen on our site, Walsh's mother has been active in voicing her opinions on the seriousness of bullying.
The scholarship will be given to up to five people each year. But Chely Wright also unveiled another plan on Wednesday. Like Me announced the Lighthouse Project, which will build an LGBT education and community center in Kansas City next year. Wright chose her home state of Missouri for the first center due to the lack of resources for gay people in the Midwest.
So, yeah, I can get over Chely Wright coming out on a book tour. Or Ricky Martin doing the same. Because, really, any celebrity who wants to be a positive role model for LGBT teenagers (and adults) is somebody that I'm going to support. The responsibility doesn't end once the media junket is done.
In 2010, when Chely Wright published her memoir, “Like Me” to tell her coming-out story, she stepped up to support the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community.
Ms. Wright founded The LIKE ME® Organization, a registered non-profit organization. Ms. Wright brought together friends, family, fans, and supporters of the LGBT community to build an organization to provide assistance, resources, and education to LGBT individuals and their family and friends.
Ms. Wright will serve as spokesperson for the LIKE ME® Organization. LIKE ME® will work to prevent LGBT bullying and teen suicide. The LIKE ME® website www.likeme.org provides links to LGBT education and health resources. The website provides a message board for those who wish to post a question and receive a reply from the LGBT community. The site posts anonymous Personal Stories for those who wish to read and find a similar story. Whether you are gay or straight, you can post your own personal story.
LIKEME is about inclusion.
LIKEME is about meeting and knowing people and choosing to seek out the ways in which we might be similar rather than they ways we might be different.
LIKEME is about support.
LIKEME is about respect.
LIKEME is about being an individual and celebrating other people’s individuality.
LIKEME is about being who you are meant to be.