Proud Prom 2019

By: Amelia Mendro

Join other LGBTQ+ youth February 23, for the 6th annual PROUD Prom and Youth Connect Conference! This event is put on every year by the Pacific Pride Foundation, to give a space for queer youth during the prom season. The conference is 2-5pm at the Deckers headquarters in Goleta. There will be speakers, group activities, and surprise guests. 5-10pm, at the same location, is the prom. Dinner will be provided, and everything is free. Just be sure to RSVP at tinyurl.com/proudprom

It is not required to go to both the conference and dance. In fact, PL of Pacific Pride says many people come for part of one, or go for only a while. They also said some prefer to dress casually for the conference, so the foundation provides cubbies to store fancier clothes for the dance.

PL has been planning this for a few months now, and likes to say that an important part of it is planning for panic. By this they mean having a plan in case panic happens, just in case. Their plans for panic are a Wellness Team to help anyone who becomes overwhelmed or needs someone to talk with. The team is made of counselors, headed by Sam from PPF. PL is also a counselor and joked that they have impossibly high standards for the team. There is also access to an outdoor patio, for people to step out onto if they need some fresh air. An observation from previous experience, PL noted that the event is long enough that if someone needs an hour or longer to take some time for themselves, there will still be plenty of time to enjoy themselves.

Ride services are also available for youth in the Santa Maria and Lompoc areas. The event welcomes youth, queer or allied, from all over the coast and inland. To RSVP for the 6th annual PROUD Prom and Youth Connect Conference go to tinyurl.com/proudprom. For further questions contact PL at 805-963-3636 x102 or patricklyra@pacificpridefoundation.org. We hope to see you there!

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