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Foundation Friday: Destination Tomorrow seeks brighter future for LGBTQ+ community

The Bronx-based organization provides a range of holistic services to LGBTQ+ individuals.

Destination Tomorrow has been an NBA Foundation grantee partner since 2023.

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When Sean Ebony Coleman founded Destination Tomorrow in 2009, he recalls hearing rumors that it wasn’t safe to be out as gay or trans in the Bronx like it was in Manhattan.

“We wanted to dispel that myth and show that there is support and pride in the Bronx from our [community] and our elected officials,” Coleman said.

Over a decade later, this aim is still at the forefront of how Destination Tomorrow — which functions as the primary organizer of New York’s annual Da Bronx Pride Festival — approaches Pride Month.

Ahead of the June 22 festival, the organization has collaborated with several uptown city council members, medical centers, small businesses and artists to put on weeks of community-centered programming. The theme of 2024’s Pride agenda is “Unbought and Unbothered,” a play on the “Unbought and Unbossed” mantra from legendary activist and congresswoman Shirley Chisholm.

Coleman said even as Destination Tomorrow adds or tweaks activities year-to-year, they still eye one common goal.

“The whole purpose is just to make sure that folks understand that there’s pride in the Bronx, there are LGBTQ+ Black and brown folks that are celebratory in the Bronx, that, with all of the hard work that we do, our borough is an inclusive, safe and comfortable place to live,” Coleman said.

Creating a national footprint

Destination Tomorrow was founded on the belief that everyone should have access to essential LGBTQ+ services — HIV testing, gender-affirming surgery, safe housing for victims of domestic and sexual violence, career training and trusted third-party referrals — regardless of where they lived.

Today, the organization is well on its way to realizing this goal, having expanded to Atlanta in 2022 — where it would soon become the first trans-led organization to receive funding from the city — and opening an office in Washington, D.C. earlier this year.

“We recognized in New York we had a blueprint that worked … so we wanted to put together our playbook and take it to other regions,” Coleman said. “We come in as collaborators. We can help you where there are gaps in services, and we want to fill those gaps and have these discussions … [as well as] show you some of the things that we did.”

With Destination Tomorrow now operating nationally, financial contributions like those from the NBA Foundation’s grant are crucial in supporting the organization’s wider programming efforts. Dr. Gloria Pope, Destination Tomorrow’s Chief Programs Officer, points to examples such as the Atlanta branch’s “Workforce Project,” a program that provides basic job skills and pathways to employment for those 14-24.

“We’re very grateful for the funding, because we’ve been able to reach a lot of youth, especially in different schools,” Pope said. “[And] group homes and homeless shelters to make sure that those youth, as they transition out of those spaces, have the skills they need to be able to thrive on their own.”

Destination Tomorrow stays busy

Destination Tomorrow’s officials don’t set limits on what they can achieve — not in terms of geography, and certainly not in terms of the calendar. Despite the symbolic importance of Pride Month, Coleman makes clear that substantive advocacy for all members of the LGBTQ+ community is a year-round effort.

“We have to get out of the habit of just celebrating in June and not recognizing that the rest of the 365 days, there’s still a need, there’s still a request from the community. The work still has to be done.

“Let’s find ways to give back outside of it just being Pride [Month].”

To learn more about Destination Tomorrow please visit