Resources for Families and Allies

Welcome, parents, families, and allies to our Family and Allies section. Here allies and parents may find resources to educate themselves, friends, and families on LGBTQ information regarding their student or friends.

Safe Person/Ally/Safe Space

Allies are some of the most effective and powerful voices of the LGBT movement. Not only do allies help people in the coming-out process, they also help others understand the importance of equality, fairness, acceptance and mutual respect. To learn more on what it means to be an Ally, this is the national GLAADS website and their extensive resources. We have a local branch right here in Santa Cruz .

Here are a just a few tips on what it means and takes to be an Ally:

  • Be a good listener and be patient. Don’t force them to disclose their information. Let them tell you at their own pace.
  • Commit yourself as an ally. Let them know you are accepting.
  • Keep their confidence by respecting their privacy.
  • Acknowledge the risk they took by coming out to you. Compliment their courage. Don’t minimize the importance.
  • Instead say, "Thank you for trusting me" or "It doesn’t change how I feel about you.”
  • Don’t overreact.
  • Don’t expect them to take care of your feelings—keep focus on them.
  • If you’re comfortable with it, offer a hug or some show of support.
  • Ask, “is there anything I can do for you?"

Here are a few great qualities of what it takes to be an Ally:

  • Allies work to develop an understanding of the needs of LGBTQIA+ folks and to align with and respond to their needs.
  • Allies know it is in their self-interest to be allies.
  • Allies are committed to the personal growth (in spite of the probable discomfort) required.
  • Allies take pride in responding to heterosexism and transphobia
  • Allies expect support from other allies.
  • Allies are able to acknowledge/ articulate how patterns of fear have operated in our lives.
  • Allies expect to make some mistakes but don’t use them as an excuse for non-action.
  • Allies know that in the most empowered ally relationships, the folks in the non-oppressed role initiate the change toward personal, institutional, and societal justice and equality.
  • Allies promote a sense of community with LGBTQIA+ folks, and teach others about the importance of outreach.
 Adapted from LGBT @ UCLA

Tips para cuando alguien sale del closet:

  • Sea buen oyente y sea paciente. Una persona que esta saliendo puedo tener dificultad hablando de ello.
  • No esfuerces a que lo divulgue. Deja que ellos/as lo digan a su propio paso.
  • Haga promesa como aliado. Déjeles saber que usted aceptada.
  • Guarda su confiaza, respeta su privacidad.
  • Reconozca el riesgo que estan tomando al “salir” a usted. No redusca al mínimo la importancia de lo que han echo diciendo, “a mi no me importa.” En lugar diga “gracias por cofiar en mi” ó “ no cambiara como yo me siento por ti” ó diga que podria cambiar cosas positivamente.
  • No sobreraccione. No esperas que ella/el tome cargo de tus emociones-mantega el foco en ella/el.
  • Si se seintes cómodo con dar un abrazo, ofrecelo o demuestra algún tipo de apoyo.
  • Pregunte si hay algo en que usted pueda ayudar.


Here are just a few resources of some LGBT advocates in the San Francisco Bay Area and around the States. These sites have a more in depth look about family and ally resources, workshops and education courses.  

Family Acceptance Project

The Family Acceptance Project® is a research, intervention, education and policy initiative that works to prevent health and mental health risks for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) children and youth, including suicide, homelessness and HIV – in the context of their families, cultures and faith communities. We use a research-based, culturally grounded approach to help ethnically, socially and religiously diverse families to support their LGBT children.

Our team has been putting research into practice by developing an evidence-based family model of wellness, prevention and care to strengthen families and promote positive development and healthy futures for LGBT children and youth. We provide training and consultation on our family-based prevention and intervention approach across the United States and in other countries.

The Diversity Center

Each year, The Diversity Center reaches approximately 10,000 individuals that we serve directly through our onsite programs, outreach and education events, our work with school-based Gay/Straight Alliances, and our Triangle Speakers program. We fulfill our mission to build an equitable community where LGBTQ+ people thrive by:

  • Developing LGBTQ+ youth leaders in local middle and high schools, who help teach acceptance and promote positive LGBTQ+ messages to their peers
  • Creating connections, building community, and reducing isolation among LGBTQ+ seniors, veterans, youth, and the Latinx community
  • Teaching acceptance and providing support for transgender individuals
  • Educating the community at-large about key legislative issues that impact LGBTQ+ rights and equality


Uniting people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) with families, friends, and allies, PFLAG is committed to advancing equality through its mission of support, education, and advocacy. PFLAG has 400 chapters and 200,000 supporters crossing multiple generations of American families in major urban centers, small cities, and rural areas in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. This vast grassroots network is cultivated, resourced, and serviced by PFLAG National, located in Washington, D.C., the National Board of Directors and 13 volunteer Regional Directors.

GSA Network

GSA Network is a next-generation LGBTQ racial and gender justice organization that empowers and trains queer, trans and allied youth leaders to advocate, organize, and mobilize an intersectional movement for safer schools and healthier communities.

Gender Spectrum

"We provide an array of services to help youth, families, organizations and institutions understand and address concepts of Gender identity and Gender expression, including how societal, cultural, organizational and community definitions of gender can be detrimental to any young person that does not fit neatly into these categories."


TransFamily Support Services

TransFamily Support Services helps youth and their families make the gender transitioning process the most positive experience possible. 

TFSS provides services such as family coaching, assistance with healthcare and insurance issues, navigating the legal system, and advocating for resources and support at schools.

At a systemic level, TFSS raises awareness and advocates for transgender acceptance in the social, medical, educational, media and legal communities.


In this section you will be able to find several family oriented LGBT videos in how to be accepting and how to create a safe space in your homes. You will also be given recommended film titles to watch on your own or with company.

*Netflix has recently updated their genres in movies to include gay and lesbian themes.*

Has your child come out to you? -Family Acceptance Project piece of one family's story of their child coming out.

In October 2011 Basic Rights Oregon launched three incredibly powerful videos as part of their Our Families campaign. These videos highlight the experiences, trials, and triumphs of African American, Latino/Latina, and Asian and Pacific Islander LGBT people in our communities.

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