July 25, 2014

Remembering Matthew – 15 Years Later

The Laramie Project – 2013

Washington, D.C. – Ford’s Theatre Director Paul R. Tetreault announced the Theatre’s 2013-2014 season will open with a new production of The Laramie Project, 15 years after the killing of Wyoming college student Matthew Shepard. The play is presented as the cornerstone production for the Ford’s Theatre Society’s Lincoln Legacy Project, a multi-year effort dedicated to sparking dialogue in the nation’s capital around issues of social injustice and the ideals of equality for which Abraham Lincoln stood. Judy Shepard, Co-Founder and President of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, will serve as the featured guest during a post-show discussion during the series of free special programs and events that will be offered in connection with the play in September/October 2013.

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2012-11-25 Remembering Matt and His Passion for Human Rights

By Jason Marsden, Executive Director

This Friday will mark 14 years since the day we lost Matt Shepard. I know from the conversations I’ve had with many of you that those terrible days in October 1998 echo in your memories: where you were, how it felt, the fears, the outrage and the questions you were left with.

Why does hatred still stalk our community, you have asked. Why can’t we be left in peace to be who we are? Is it ever going to change?

We have wrestled with those questions for all these years, too. Matt’s mother and father continue to try to answer them as best they can as they travel the country, and now more of the world to speak to LGBT community members and even more importantly, their allies.

Hatred is powerful, and learned. Hatred is not reasonable, and people can seldom be reasoned out of beliefs they weren’t reasoned into in the first place.
But social forces can work against hatred just as they have worked in its favor for centuries. And so that’s where we at the Foundation have felt our shoulder fits best to the wheel: creating social momentum that pushes hatred aside in favor of understanding, compassion and acceptance.

[Read more...]

Chase Community Giving Contest

Matthew Shepard Foundation Selected for Grant in Chase Community Giving Contest

The Matthew Shepard Foundation will receive a $25,000 grant from the JP Morgan Chase Foundation in the new year to further our educational and outreach programs against hatred and bias, thanks to votes cast by Facebook users in the bank?s “Chase Community Giving” program.

Fans of the Matthew Shepard Foundation on the leading online social network cast enough votes to place us in the top 100 community charities nationwide in first-round balloting earlier in December. A second round of voting begins January 15, in which the top vote-getting nonprofit organization will qualify for $1 million, and five runners-up will win $100,000 grants.

“The overwhelming show of support for the Matthew Shepard Foundation is deeply gratifying and will provide us a huge boost as we seek to double our outreach to schools and community groups in 2010,” said Executive Director Jason Marsden.

“We hugely appreciate the thousands of supporters who voted for us on Facebook to give us this unique opportunity and additional exposure,” Marsden added.

The unexpected new grant will also help expedite our ongoing Web development work already under way for 2010, in which our youth-oriented Web resource, MatthewsPlace.com, will be expanded to include more user-generated content and on-demand educational program modules.

While the Foundation personally reached 18 high schools, 23 colleges and 22 community organizations with its seminars and speaking programs in 2009, developing similar programs delivered via the Internet will allow us to reach a vastly larger audience with our message of replacing hate with understanding, compassion and acceptance.

Facebook users can register to participate in the next round of voting by visiting the Chase Community Giving page athttp://apps.facebook.com/chasecommunitygiving/ and following the instructions provided.

Matthew Shepard Foundation Interns

Matthew Shepard Foundation is looking for a young person from the Denver Metro area to serve as a MatthewsPlace.com intern this spring.

US:
Since Matthew’s death and the creation of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, Judy Shepard has spent countless hours meeting young people across the country. Many of these young people have reached out to her to share their stories about the pain and hurt of being teased, harassed, and mistreated by their peers, parents, and other community members for being who they are.
Judy quickly discovered that there is a gap in the information that is being offered to young people, especially those in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQQ) and allied community. She felt that one way the Matthew Shepard Foundation could use its voice is to provide young people with a safe place to access resources and information critical to their development and survival.
Matthewsplace.com is that vehicle and continues to be a fitting tribute to Judy’s son Matthew who was killed simply for being who he was. MatthewsPlace.com provides LGBTQQ and allied youth with a site that incorporates cutting-edge technology with up-to-date information and resources about how to live a healthy, productive, and hate-free life.
THE TASK:
As an intern you will be asked to spend 16 hours a week this spring assisting MSF staff with the ongoing maintenance of MatthewsPlace.com. This will include identifying new resources and content to post to the site on a weekly basis. You may also be asked to provide other support within the organization as needed.
THE INTERN:
We are looking for someone who has knowledge of and/or interest in social justice issues, is getting ready to start college or is currently enrolled and has the ability to work independently in a fast-paced, dynamic work environment.

If you are interested, please visit: http://www.matthewshepard.org

Tell a Friend!

10 YEAR LOGO MED
Matthew Shepard Foundation was founded by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of their 21-year old son, Matthew, who was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in Wyoming in October 1998. Created to honor Matthew in a manner that was appropriate to his dreams, beliefs and aspirations, the Foundation seeks to “Replace Hate with Understanding, Compassion & Acceptance” through its varied educational, outreach and advocacy programs and by continuing to tell Matthew’s story.

Matthewsplace.com Announces Lauren Neil as its first Youth Correspondent!

MatthewsPlace.com is honored to announce the appointment of its first Youth Correspondent: Lauren Neal, who served as an intern for the Matthew Shepard Foundation this summer and worked to provide innovative and timely content for MatthewsPlace. Lauren, a rising junior at Brown University in Providence, RI, focuses her studies in the departments of Theatre Arts & Performance Studies and Modern Culture & Media; while maintaining a vested interest in literature, foreign language, critical race and queer theory, and computer science. On Brown’s campus, Lauren participates in activist organizations for queer students and students of color, as well as pursuing creative endeavors in theatre, film, and digital media; a culmination of her desire to interrogate the intersection of the arts, technology, and social justice.

MatthewsPlace.com is designed to provide young people with the resources they need to both survive in the world and make a difference. It provides a wealth of materials, from moderated chats and podcasts to regular columns by notable individuals in the GLBTQQ and allied community. Most importantly, the site provides a comprehensive list of GLBTQQ youth friendly shelters, outreach centers, and empowerment programs in communities all across the country so that young people in either rural or urban areas know where they can go for help and information. It is important to us that a large portion of MatthewsPlace’s content is created by the young people it is designed to support.

When asked why she felt MatthewsPlace.com is so important, Lauren noted the following:

“MatthewsPlace.com is a premiere source of information, support, and inspiration for LGBTQQ and allied youth. Part of our own work, as LGBTQ youth, should be to suture the gaps in knowledge of the history of sexual minorities, as well as make a steadfast effort to establish a notable presence of young people in the conversation and debate surrounding LGBTQ protection and equality. The palpable resources of the Internet must be tapped and directed in a manner that is beneficial to the education, empowerment, and inspiration of people, youth in particular. MatthewsPlace.com is paramount to both progressing youth access to underrepresented and/or marginalized voices and their stories and providing a platform for LGBTQQ and allied youth to produce and publish their own thoughts, ideas, and stories.

“I am committed to the notion that every story told and heard is another step in advancing the Matthew Shepard Foundation mission to replace hate with understanding, compassion, and acceptance. Words on MatthewsPlace.com are not just words: they are fireworks, explosive and powerful methods of increasing visibility of LGBTQ persons and the issues pertinent to their livelihood.”

Look for Lauren’s continued work on MatthewsPlace in the coming months!

Matthew Shepard Intern

Matthew Shepard Foundation is looking for a young person from the Denver Metro area to serve as a MatthewsPlace.com intern this summer.

US:
Since Matthew’s death and the creation of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, Judy Shepard has spent countless hours meeting young people across the country.  Many of these young people have reached out to her to share their stories about the pain and hurt of being teased, harassed, and mistreated by their peers, parents, and other community members for being who they are.

Judy quickly discovered that there is a gap in the information that is being offered to young people, especially those in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQQ) and allied community.  She felt that one way the Matthew Shepard Foundation could use its voice is to provide young people with a safe place to access resources and information critical to their development and survival.

Matthewsplace.com is that vehicle and continues to be a fitting tribute to Judy?s son Matthew who was killed simply for being who he was.   MatthewsPlace.com provides LGBTQQ and allied youth with a site that incorporates cutting-edge technology with up-to-date information and resources about how to live a healthy, productive, and hate-free life.

THE TASK:
As an intern you will be asked to spend 16 hours a week this summer assisting MSF staff with the ongoing maintenance of MatthewsPlace.com.  This will include identifying new resources and content to post to the site on a weekly basis.  You may also be asked

to provide other support within the organization as needed.

THE INTERN:
We are looking for someone who has knowledge of and/or interest in social justice issues, is getting ready to start college or is currently enrolled and has the ability to work independently in a fast-paced, dynamic work environment.

If you are interested, reply to this message and attach a cover letter and resume.

Tell a Friend!

10 YEAR LOGO MED

Matthew Shepard Foundation was founded by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of their 21-year old son, Matthew, who was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in Wyoming in October 1998.  Created to honor Matthew in a manner that was appropriate to his dreams, beliefs and aspirations, the Foundation seeks to “Replace Hate with Understanding, Compassion & Acceptance” through its varied educational, outreach and advocacy programs and by continuing to tell Matthew’s story.

From Judy – February 2009

January 20th, Logan and I were lucky enough to be in DC to witness history.  Now is time to rejoice in a new beginning.  It is a time when all Americans must work together for the good of our country and all its citizens.  We will work for a future of peace and prosperity.  We can’t forget what got us here vigilance and the knowledge that the right thing will happen only if we work toward the same goal of equality. It won’t be easy. It will take time and sacrifice from all of us to achieve that goal.

We are confident that President Obama and the new administration will be our champions.  The GLBT community will finally achieve equal rights across the board.  It will not happen all at once. Maybe not this year or even this term but it will happen.  The Matthew Shepard Foundation will be working toward that goal with you. We all need to work together to make this happen partners in progress not splinter factions.

Judy_Signiture
Judy Shepard
Executive Director

Imperial Court System

The Matthew Shepard Foundation(MSF) and the Imperial Court System(ICS) have joined forces to deliver MSF programming to over 68 cities in the United States, Canada and Mexico….

High School & Community Outreach

The Foundation is proud to announce a new community outreach program. The FBI estimates that more than 7,000 hate crimes occur in the United States each year. Whether we hear about them in the news or read about them in the paper, they become external. Many of us do not acknowledge or understand the role hate plays in our everyday lives. Furthermore, often times we do not consider how we contribute to the problem or what we can do to change it.

This discussion will lead participants on a journey to help them identify how hate manifests itself in their everyday lives and what they can do to stop it. Participants will discuss how individuals contribute to the problem and what they can do to forward the process of replacing hate with understanding, compassion and acceptance.

Erase Hate For The Holidays

Erase Hate For The Holidays

Help the Matthew Shepard Foundation Erase Hate this holiday season! In the last year, the Foundation has made great strides in the fight for Equality.  This would not have been possible without the support of people just like you. For this holiday season, we invite you to renew your committment to Erasing Hate.  We also encourage you to share it with others.  Below are five great ways to support our mission of Replacing Hate with Understanding, Compassion & Acceptance.
  • Support the Message – Make a one-time $20 donation to help us Erase Hate!
  • Wear the Message - New Limited Edition “Raise Yourself” t-shirt
  • Spread the Message - Give your loved ones a new Erase Hate hoodie or invite 10 friends to join the Campaign to Erase Hate
  • Give the Message - Buy a celebrity signed gift in our holiday eBay auction

As always, the best way to support our mission is to sign up to become a sustaining donor. We would not be able to continue our work without the generous support of our wonderful donors. Thank you. 
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DONATE TODAY AND MILLER COORS WILL MATCH YOUR DONATION!
Give a gift that will help us continue to Replace Hate with Understanding, Compassion & Acceptance. Your one-time gift will make it possible for us to prepare for the Foundation’s 10th Anniversary year and ensure that we continue to Erase Hate!  This holiday season Miller Coors has pledged a generous $10,000 matching gift.  Your donation to the Foundation will be doubled thanks to a generous offer.  
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WEAR THE MESSAGE DURING THE HOLIDAYS
Wear the message the Holiday Season with our new Erase Hate hoodie and “Raise Yourself” t-shirts.   Perfect for Holiday Parties, office receptions, and gifts to loved ones. 
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Erase Hate Hoodie 2 Raise Yourself t-shirt
New 
ERASE HATE Hoodie
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Limited Edition 
“Raise Yourself” t-shirt
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HOLIDAY CELEBRITY eBay AUCTION
The Matthew Shepard Foundation is hosting a holiday eBay auction of perfect holiday gifts! 

When:  November  29 – December 9
Why:    To benefit the Matthew Shepard Foundation
What:   The ebay auction will feature items signed by: Susan Sarandon, Iman, Michael Buble, Betty White, Wanda Sykes, Robert Pattinson, Daniel Radcliffe, Barbra Streisand, Kat Von D, Judi Dench, Pete Wentz, Sharon Osbourne, James Taylor, and many more.
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Auction Includes:  
Barbara_Streisand_Bear Devil_Prada_Poster American_Idol_Shirt
Barbra Streisand Signed
MSF Teddy Bear
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Meryl Streep Signed 
Devil Wears Prada Poster
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2008 American Idol Finalist
Signed Erase Hate Shirt
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