The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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How you can help the Pride Center help you

Brenda Larin
CSUN students looking at donated clothes at the gender-reaffirming closet located in the Pride Center in Northridge, Calif.

CSUN’s Pride Center provides many resources to aid queer students on campus, but there are numerous ways that students themselves can help the Pride Center make the campus a more inclusive place, from financial aid to direct engagement.

Established over 10 years ago, the Pride Center at CSUN seeks to aid students who are a part of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex and asexual (LGBTQ+) communities on campus through education programs and several other resources.

The Pride Center lists numerous resources on its website available for students who are a part of the LGBTQ+ community, ranging from on-and-off-campus opportunities for students looking to minor in queer studies, to counseling services, disability-related resources and community groups and events.

Ren Stone, the Pride Center supervisor, also notes that beyond counseling and community events, they also provide direct services for LGBTQ+ students at CSUN.

“We always have sexual health supplies here,” Stone said. “So, like, condoms, lube, dental dams… we also have an organization we partner with that’s actually outside of CSUN that supports getting students rapid HIV tests as well, if they need those.”

While CSUN does provide an annual budget for the Pride Center — the proposed budget of the 2021-22 school year was just over $330,000 — individuals looking to financially assist queer students can do so via donations to the Pride Center. This can be done through the Pride Center’s support page, or through checks and money orders to the CSUN Foundation.

Another way in which the Pride Center raises money is during CSUN’s Giving Day. Giving Day is a 36-hour-long campus-wide event that pairs donors with certain challenge grants, or goals, to raise money to help student scholarships and other facets of campus life. The most recent event was held in March, and while the overall campus was able to raise $236,138, the Pride Center only raised about $150.

If money was of no object, Stone said, one resource they’d like to see the Pride Center include is an in-house counselor.

“It’s rare that resource centers have that type of resource,” Stone said. “It’s expensive, and it also means that they need to be supported. And, like myself and my manager, we’re not healthcare professionals. And so the kind of support that we can provide them, you know, is not necessarily what they would need.”

But beyond financial assistance, Stone suggests that one of the ways students can help the Pride Center is by simply engaging with it.

“I think what people can do is tell people in their communities about our space,” Stone said. “Come to our space, interact with it, you know, get a tour. Like, if anybody wants to visit the Pride Center, everybody is welcome to access our resources and also just kind of build community with us.”

For students looking to further engage with the community, CSUN has numerous annual events planned for students who fit into all aspects of the LGBTQ+ community. From “Trans Empowerment Week,” which seeks to uplift trans students, to “An AROdynamic spACE”, which provides a community space for students who are aromantic or asexual, the Pride Center has many events for a diverse body of LGBTQ+ students.

“It’s just kind of showing up as best that you can and getting the word out and sharing things with us that you think, you know, we might be able to utilize a resource that you learned about,” Stone said.

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