Chicago GLBT Community to Raise Money for Housing GLBT Victims of Hurricane Katrina

Fri. September 2, 2005 12:00 AM

Out of the Watercooler, Into the Delta

Chicago, IL - A grass roots group of people are calling the Illinois GLBT community to take a single day to raise money to shelter and house GLBT victims of Hurricane Katrina. The day will be Monday, September 12, 2005.

The money will be given to a nonprofit entity operating in New Orleans to be distributed to GLBT who need housing and shelter. The nonprofit will be selected using United Way’s criteria and objectives for measuring agency efficiency and accountability.

Chicago House, a nonprofit organization which provides housing and support services for persons living with HIV/AIDS, will serve as the pass through organization for the donations.

“Over the last two decades, our residents have taught us the devastation of losing everything, including their homes,” says Reverend Stan Sloan, Executive Director of Chicago House. “We are happy to help others needing shelter in any way that we can.”

“The idea behind Out of the Watercooler, Into the Delta is that GLBT community has its own network that operates in most Chicago businesses.” says Coco Soodek, one of the organizers of the effort, “Chances are, those groups have already been talking about the effects of Hurricane Katrina, and chances are they have felt as helpless as the greater public has about what any one person can do. A concentrated campaign for members of our own community in New Orleans is a real and achievable answer to what we as a community can do.”

GLBT people are asked to bring a check to work on Monday, September 12th and to designate one person from their own watercooler GLBT network to collect the checks and send them to Chicago House. Chicago House has also set up access for online donations for persons who may not be part of such work network at its website at Tax deduction letters for all donations will be issued by Chicago House.

“The hurricane came swiftly and so will our efforts. People can only live without shelter for so long and time is of the essence. We hope that for one day, GLBTs from across our community will dig a little deeper to help the suddenly homeless GLBT community in the Big Easy,” says Coco Soodek. “All of New Orleans will now depend on the kindness of strangers – but among GLBTs, there are no strangers, only friends. ”

For information or to get involved, contact Coco Soodek by email at or by phone at 312.497.0423.

Make checks payable to Chicago House/Katrina Relief and send checks to:

Chicago House/Katrina Relief
c/o Chicago House
1925 North Clybourn, Suite 401
Chicago, Illinois 60614

Credit card donations can be made via the web at: