At USGA’s meeting on September 18th, the evening was spent preparing for Provo’s 2nnd Annual Pride Festival (which took place the following Saturday). Attendees were broken up into small groups to answer the following questions:
1. How did you find out about USGA?
2. Why do you come to USGA?
3. How can USGA reach out to more people?
Afterwards, attendees were invited to write a short blurb on an index card that completed the statement “Why I come to USGA”. These cards, accompanied with a small photo of each consenting member, were displayed at the USGA booth during Provo Pride.
These are some of the responses:
“USGA was there when I thought I had nothing left–I did not find just friends, I found a family.”
“”When I admitted to myself about the way I felt, I thought that my life was ruined. I wanted to know that I was not alone. USGA gave me a chance to hold to my faith while dealing with the reality of what I knew.”
“There are no assumptions made. No elephants in the room. No fixing, saving, convincing, persuading. If sexuality comes up, we talk about it genuinely. If it doesn’t, it’s fine! There is more love, happiness, and comfort here, and it is all unconditional. There is a rich diversity of opinions, ideas, and perspectives, an I feel comfortable.”
“I come to USGA because people here understand. Here, I can be comfortable with who I am and talk to people who have had the same experiences.”
“I come for the loving, friendly atmosphere and to make friends. USGA is there for me when I need support, and I am there for others.”
“I go to USGA because I was curious to know about the program and how they help people.”
“I come to USGA because everyone is a child of God and it teaches me compassion.”
“[I go to USGA] in the hope that someday we won’t need it anymore, but we’ll keep doing it anyways.”
“74% of BYU LGBT+ students have suicidal ideation and 24% attempt. I go to USGA to not become a statistic.”
“I come to USGA to socialize. All my friends are here.”
“I love being friends with my peers here at BYU. This is a safe space to be myself.”
“It’s a great place to have the best of being Mormon and gay.”
“[I go to USGA] to talk and learn without shame.”
“[I go to USGA] to love and support.”
“[I go to USGA] to be a part of something greater than myself.”