Sean Ebony Coleman says he made it his mission to run an LGBTQ community center here in the Bronx.
“I wanted to make sure that Black and brown folks who identified as LGBT did not have to leave their borough or their neighborhood to receive services and programs that were affirming and safe,” said Coleman, who was particularly concerned for members of the trans community.
That’s why the Brooklyn native says he founded Destination Tomorrow.
“I wanted to create what I needed when I was coming up,” said Coleman. “The services that were available were not necessarily centered on or focused on Black trans people.”
He says the South Bronx agency is the only Black-led organization of its kind in the city and offers health, housing, financial and other supports to a vulnerable demographic.
“Right now, they’re telling trans people which bathrooms they can use. Maybe tomorrow they’ll tell you which bathroom you can use, or which sport you can play, or how you can participate with your loved ones,” said Coleman.
But, as with his activism, Coleman takes his responsibility as a role model very seriously.
“For the Black trans guy that’s 14 or 15 who’s really just finding himself, to see me somewhere is like ‘oh I can do this and I can be whatever it was I thought I couldn’t be but folks were telling me that’s not going to happen because i have questions with my gender," said Coleman.
He’s focused promoting economic empowerment in the community and is working to expand to Atlanta while always urging for more support and inclusion.
“Especially with all the anti-trans laws that are coming out, we need our allies to come out an support and ally-ship doesn’t just mean contributing financially. It means showing up for us and we need folks to show up for us,” said Coleman.