FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
#Pizza4Equality Raises $160,000 to Help LGBTQ Homeless Youth in 26 days
On Tuesday, April 28, 2015, Memeographs owner Scott Wooledge met with Grammy, Emmy, and Tony Award-Winning artist, Cyndi Lauper, to present a $160,000.00 check to the True Colors Fund, a youth charity she co-founded.
“I am very proud of what was accomplished in less than a month. I am glad we were able to make a giant statement of love and support for our most vulnerable youth. These online organizing tools are tremendously empowering,” said Wooledge, a Brooklyn-based activist who owns the social media campaign consulting business, Memeographs.
“While #Pizza4Equality campaign was given virtually no attention from any major news media, that proved no problem. Team #Pizza4Equality—62,000 grassroots supporters strong—built a great campaign by ourselves. Beyond the issue of marriage equality, I see a big appetite for the more tertiary issues of the LGBT movement, like caring for our youth.”
“The True Colors Fund is deeply grateful to Scott Wooledge for creating the #Pizza4Equality campaign, and the over 4,200 people who made generous donations,” said Gregory Lewis, Executive Director of the True Colors Fund. “It is truly inspiring how Scott provided an empowering opportunity for so many people to show their support for the up to 40% of homeless youth who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender in America.”
Lauper and True Colors staff were in Washington, D.C., to testify before a Senate subcommittee on efforts to help and prevent youth homelessness. Later they also met with Obama administration staff at the White House on Wednesday, April 29, to present findings of programs to address and even prevent homeless youth. These programs are part of a joint collaboration with the Office of Housing and Urban development and currently being implemented in Ohio and Texas, with a goal of upscaling strategies that work. It was part of a greater day of awareness of the epidemic of homeless youth, the True Colors Fund had dubbed, Forty To None Day.
#Pizza4Equality is a grassroots fundraising campaign initiated and operating independently of the True Colors Fund. Conceived by Wooledge as a response to the national news story of a pizza place in Indiana that received tens of thousands of dollars in support of their policy of discriminating against LGBT customers. The $160,000 was raised by 4,224 donors from around the world in a span of just 26 days. Primarily powered by social media with supporters sharing news of the campaign more than 62,000 times on social media networks. It was initiated by Scott Wooledge on the GoFundMe site. Wooledge is a Brooklyn-based activist and operates the social media campaign consulting business Memeographs. (Memeographs.com) The fund, http://www.gofundme.com/Pizza4Equality remains active.
“In the end, Wooledge said, “#Pizza4Equality was just trying to reclaim pizza’s good name by asking folks to donate the cost of a pizza to the True Colors Fund to help LGBTQ homeless youth.”
The True Colors Fund was co-founded by Cyndi Lauper to end homelessness among gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth through a broad continuum of public education and engagement, advocacy and public policy, youth collaboration, research, and community building programs. www.truecolorsfund.org