Welcome to Matt Ingalls' 2017 Ride For Pride Fundraising Page!
Thank you for visiting my fundraising page! Hopefully you're here because you too would like to support the Gay Alliance of Genesee Valley by making a donation on my behalf.
In less than two weeks I will be riding 50 miles on my bike from Fairport to Pultneyville and back to support the Gay Alliance of Genesee Valley! In order to participate in this ride I have to meet my fundraising goal of $400.00!
Why am I riding?
We live in a country where a piece of paper entitles every American to certain unalienable rights. However, social norms make the opposite a reality. Our healthcare system, social support systems, courts, and religious institutions are built to cater to the needs of a narrow hetero demographic. The GAGV formed a community which caters to the needs to non-hetero demographic of the Greater Rochester area.
I was very fortunate to grow up in a town just outside Rochester, where I thought parents and students were allowed to express themselves. I had friends that were comfortable expressing their sexuality as they discovered it and they were relatively safe.
Unfortunately, even in my "safe" community, this was not always the case. While they were trying to find themselves a friend of mine was frequently badgered by both students and staff for their choice of style and experimenting with gender association. This friend was told--rather publicly--that it was not appropriate to use the womens restroom due to the fact that it confused teachers and security guards. The resolution forced this friend to abstain from wearing "women's" clothing on school grounds and he/she was asked to use the mens restroom because their birth certificate had a check in the box designated "male." Thankfully, unlike the school, our community was largely supportive and this friend has found himself and now leads a fulfilling life! Nevertheless, conversations about high school always come back to how it could have been different.
While it's true that things are nowhere near as bad as they were for my uncle who grew up gay in the 60's, it is unacceptable to ridicule a child for trying to find themselves. The GAGV's mission is to create a future "where all members of the greater Rochester LGBTQ communities, at all stages of their lives, are free to be fully participating citizens, celebrating their lives in which they are safe, stable and fully respected." I support the GAGV mission so that, one day, no adult or chil will be persecuted for their sexuality, or gender association. It is my hope that you too will support the GAGV and enable me to participate in the 2017 Ride For Pride by donating on my behalf.
Thank your for your support! Together we can inspire great change in our society to make it a safe and fulfilling environment for all!