In 1979, the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles was formed. In that same year, Barry Manilow released the song “One Voice.” It begins…
Just one voice, singing in the darkness,
All it takes is one voice
Singing so they hear what’s on your mind,
And when you look around you’ll find
There’s more than one voice…
When people come together, they can accomplish great things. And that’s just what GMCLA has done, along with thousands of other people every day. While some stories are well known, other random acts of kindness go unnoticed, but that doesn’t make them any less significant.
By collaborating with community leaders, Foresters Financial Services, Inc. is committed to making a difference and creating a positive impact on society. That’s why they lend their voice to organizations that support our neighborhoods and give our youth the tools, resources and courage to face life’s challenges, regardless of sexual orientation, physical ability, race, religion or financial status.
Toward this goal, Foresters Financial™ is once again sponsoring the Voice Awards, the single biggest fundraising event benefiting the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles and its programs. By supporting this worthy cause, Foresters has shown its commitment to the communities they call home through GMCLA’s Alive Music Project and the it gets better Tour.
Every year, over 85 percent of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students in American schools are physically or verbally abused. The Alive Music Project’s outreach program, designed for middle and high school students, uses music to create anti-bullying messages. Since its founding, over 45,000 Los Angeles in grades 9-12 have heard and listened to the messages that demystify gay stereotypes and help improve self-esteem, while teaching acceptance, inclusion and equality in schools. The it gets better Tour visits tens of thousands of students at different schools across the country, utilizing workshops, performance art and stage shows to bring real life stories of love and acceptance, thereby fighting the climate of bullying and teen violence.
Foresters Financial values the commitment of GMCLA and its programs, especially those aimed at our young people. “While we are dedicated to providing innovative financial solutions to help investors reach their goals, we are also a staunch advocate of enhancing the well-being of the families and communities where we do business,” explained Bill Lipkus, President and CEO, Foresters Financial Holding Company, Inc. “Everywhere we go, we like to leave it better than we found it.”
Whether it’s helping young people understand the basics of investing through the Junior Achievement Program, helping to build a new playground on Staten Island, New York to bring a community closer together, or supporting an organization like GMCLA, which strives to educate people about equal rights for all Americans, Foresters Financial is there.
A lot has changed since 1979 when Barry Manilow wrote “One Voice” and GMCLA was born. During that time, GMCLA’s one voice has joined with many other voices over the years to get their message of acceptance public. While discrimination toward the LGBT community remains, things are improving each year with the help of organizations like GMCLA and public support from corporations, such as Foresters Financial. As Barry Manilow’s lyrics say, “It takes just one voice…”