LOS ANGELES – The WiRLD Foundation, a new non-profit organization, has been formed to deliver resources to homeless LGBT youth rejected by their families and to aid in other worthy causes.
“There is a silent epidemic in America of tens of thousands of children living on the streets because of their sexual orientation – and it’s time not only for attention to this issue, but decisive action to be taken,” said Bobby Blair, LGBT media mogul. Blair, a former international world-ranked tennis professional, has written a book, “Hiding Inside the Baseline,” that chronicles his own desperation and struggles as a closeted gay athlete. His story is currently airing as a television documentary.
“The very first objective of the WiRLD Foundation will be to get homeless youth off the streets and into shelters where they can find food, comfort and a helping hand,” said Blair. “I believe that every single person in this world deserves to have a coach and mentor to guide them so they can achieve their true potential and live their truth.”
“If the desperation of our gay, lesbian and transgendered sons and daughters is important to you, please join us and help,” he continued. “We welcome nominations to our proposed 15-member Board of Directors as well as volunteers, especially by those with experience in social work and counseling. Anyone wanting to help in this cause will be welcomed.”
The executive director of the foundation will be Brian Neal, Blair’s life and business partner who has an extensive background in LGBT charities and is the co-founder of Multimedia Platforms Inc. A fitness instructor by training, Neal was the inspiration behind the Brian Neal Fitness & Health Foundation, started in April 2011, which helped countless number of HIV-positive men and women in South Florida successfully get access to fitness programs and health training facilities.
“The WiRLD Foundation will replace the BNFHF but focus on all areas of need in the LGBT community, not just HIV,” said Neal. “It is our intention also to help fund other deserving charities. We want to help wherever help is needed in the LGBT community.”
Blair is the founder and CEO of Multimedia Platforms Worldwide, the only publicly-traded LGBT media company which owns and operates print and digital media in the three largest gay meccas in the nation: New York City, Los Angeles and South/Central Florida. The company’s top brands include Frontiers magazine in Los Angeles; Florida Agenda, the weekly newspaper of record in South Florida; multi-city travel guides called WiRLD City Guides (formerly FunMaps); as well as entertainment guides Guy magazine and Next magazine in New York City and South Florida, respectively. Collectively, the brands reach approximately 7.5 million readers and 4+ million unique online users annually.
MMPW’s WiRLD digital hub features a global news stand, global business directory, community LGBT network, a first-of-the kind rewards program and an online entertainment network to launch during the second quarter of 2016. WiRLD.com is currently in beta testing.
“The WiRLD Foundation is the charitable arm of our WiRLD digital brand,” explained Neal.
The WiRLD Foundation’s inaugural fundraising event will be “Dancing with the South Florida Stars,” a fun-filled evening during which LGBT community leaders and business people are paired with local celebrity entertainers. The event has been a staple in South Florida for the BNFHF, and will now be expanded with similar events in Los Angeles and New York.