Schools & Education

LGBTQ Youth Resource Center and Safe Space Opening This Weekend

San Benito County's first-ever LGBTQ youth resource center and safe space opening on Saturday at the Esperanza Center in downtown Hollister

Nearly a year in the making, San Benito County’s first-ever gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning (LGBTQ) youth resource center and safe space is opening its doors on Saturday.

As reported by BenitoLink, the center and safe space is the result of a partnership forged between San Benito High School’s Gay-Straight Alliance club and the county’s Behavioral Health Department.

The opening was originally scheduled for the start of the school year. But because of staffing issues the Prevention and Early Intervention (PEI) LGBTQ Project—the unofficial name for the one day a week resource center and safe space serving high school-age youth—was delayed, explained Behavioral Health Clinical Supervisor and the county’s point-person on the project, Veronica Gallacher, in an email to BentioLink.

And she added that center’s debut this weekend holds special significance.

“Opening day was timed to coincide with Coming Out Week and LGBTQ history month as well as LGBTQ Center Awareness day [on] 10/19,” she said.

The Esparanza Center, located in downtown Hollister, will serve as the resource center and safe space’s home. It will be open every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This weekend's grand opening will include live music, food, games, and prizes. In addition, attendees will vote on the center's official name and logo.

More information:

Follow the LGBTQ+ Resource Center on Facebook.

The Esperanza Center
544 San Benito Street, Suite 102
Hollister, Ca., 95023

Business hours:
Monday and Wednesday: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tuesday & Thursday: 1 to 5 p.m.
Friday: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

San Benito County Behavioral Health Services
1131 San Felipe Rd.
Hollister, CA 95023
(831) 636-4020



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Frank Pérez

I’m a lifelong resident of San Benito County. I reside in Hollister with my wife, Brenda. I’m embarking on my 19th year at San Benito High School, where I teach world history and Mexican-American history. In addition, I'm moonlighting as a freelance journalist for BenitoLink. My passion is delving deeper into the nuances of the local, historical record, while including lesser-known stories of our past. My hope is that county residents will have a greater appreciation for the diversity and complexity of San Benito County, realizing that its uniqueness depends upon our responsibility as its stewards.