I Live Here I Give Here: Amplify Austin Welcomes Strong Family Alliance

02.02.2018

Strong Family Alliance was accepted to participate in Amplify Austin this year, and we are beyond excited. Anyone who lives in Austin, Texas has heard of Amplify Austin Day. It’s a community-wide day of online giving, making it easy for local donors to find and support local non-profits. We get to be part of this Very Big Deal. To participate as a non-profit, part of our responsibility is to work to share our cause with potential donors.

Luckily, Amplify Austin offered a Social Media 101 presentation and panel discussion. I tried to soak up two hours of wisdom from three non-profit panelists and a presenter. These women can explain social media/digital marketing in their sleep. I listened to them describe impressive and creative social media campaigns and offer advice.

Their tips made sense: Create appealing visuals. Take pictures. Tell a compelling story (in 5 seconds). Help donors understand what you do. Make it fun!

Hmmm.

Why doesn’t this seem easy? What 5-second video, image, or message could we create? I struggled with how to apply these ideas to our mission to support the beautiful, painful, and complex journeys of parents of LGBTQ kids. Can it be packaged into concrete, relatable, pieces for social media?

I felt nervous.  Can we do this? I’m not creative.

But it’s not only my lack of creativity that stands between us and a glitzy, fun Facebook campaign. We have some unique barriers: Stigma. Shame. A divide in our country about what liberties the LGBTQ community deserves.

It is a bit scary to put ourselves out there for others to ‘like.’ We cannot count on the support of everyone who hears about us. Some people will think we are wrong to recommend that parents give love, support, and acceptance to their LGBTQ kids. There is a risk here.

And then it hit me.

This is a just a small taste of what families may feel after their child has come out to them. Will we be supported if we talk about what’s going on? Will others think we are wrong? What will they think? There is a big risk: the possibility of losing a friend, family member, or church community because their child is gay.

My risk seems small compared to theirs, which makes me even more proud to shout our cause through the rooftop. Thank you, #AmplifyATX for the means and support to do so.