One Voice Community Center in Danger of Closing; Calls on the Community for Assistance

One Voice Community Center, which has been serving the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) community in Phoenix for just less than two years, is in danger of closing soon.

According to the center's newsletter and Facebook page, One Voice was sustained by a single Magellan grant. Community center board member Delphina Thomas says they've lost the grant because "of some things we didn't fulfill on our end." Without the grant, the center's struggling to pay its bills, and must raise $3,000 by the end of April or close its doors.

Since opening less than two years ago, One Voice Community Center has been home base for a number of projects, including the

Anti-Violence Project

, which provides services for people in need, from suggesting GLBT-friendly medical services to providing shelter for homeless youth and suicide prevention counseling. One Voice also partners with the Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS to provide

free HIV testing

, and the center's also home to the

BJ Bud Memorial Library

, an information center, and an art gallery featuring works by local artists.

But all that may come to an end if One Voice can't raise enough funds to stay open. Even if they raise the needed $3,000 in funds by the end of April, board members say they'll need to bring in at least $3,000 every month after that to stay open, and would prefer to bring in $5,000 a month to continue providing all their community services. Without the grant, One Voice Community Center brings in roughly $1,200 a month.

The center needs funds and volunteers to continue operating, and will host a meeting from 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday, March 31 to discuss how to keep One Voice alive. There will be three groups at the meeting, covering communications, finance, and the facility. One Voice particularly needs people to help staff the front desk, manage the library, assist with marketing, and help write grant applications.

"We're not giving up," Thomas says. "We're going to do everything we can to stay open, and we're calling on the community for help."

One Voice Community Center is located at 725 W. Indian School Road. Call 602-712-0111 or visit www.1vcc.org for more information.

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