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It’s important for people to have a sense of community, because humans are social creatures. We thrive and improve when we’re united. It can be extremely daunting when you’re excluded from a community for simply being who you are. You Are Welcome Here (YAWH) allows students from different faith, cultural, sexuality, and gender backgrounds to come together and form a community. YAWH will help people who feel like they’re alone in the world find a loving and comforting environment to grow and learn.
— Ibrahim Kamara
There are few experiences more painful than being rejected by your community. Yet, for many LGBTQIA+ persons of faith, this scenario happens regularly, and often, harshly. Human beings have an innate need for love, acceptance, and belonging, and for many members of the LGBTQIA+ community, an aspect of their identity (gender, sexuality, or spirituality) has had to be suppressed or denied for a cheap substitution of these basic needs. You Are Welcome Here (YAWH) will be a lifeline for these individuals. Where there has been division, YAWH will be a source of unity; where there has been prejudice, YAWH will be a source of equality and understanding; and where there has been rejection, YAWH will be a source of complete and total acceptance and belonging. No person should be required to sacrifice an aspect of their identity for the sake of another, and no identity expression should be celebrated as superior to one that differs. YAWH is paving the way toward a society of greater inclusion, justice, and celebration of diversity, and for many of the marginalized individuals in the community, this will make all of the difference in the world.
— Zach Verwey