The mission of The Center Orange County is to advocate on behalf of the Orange County LGBT community, and to provide services that ensure its well-being and positive identity.
The Center Orange County (The Center OC) was established as a volunteer organization in 1971 and incorporated in 1975 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit community-based organization. We are one of the oldest gay and lesbian community centers in the United States.
The Center OC provides services to more than 10,000 individuals annually across a broad spectrum of cultures, ethnicities, ages, and economic backgrounds. Programming is especially designed for gay men, lesbians, youth, the transgender community, the Spanish-speaking LGBT community, the bisexual community, those who are questioning, and LGBT families.
The Center’s services are designed to promote positive identity and wellness for the Orange County LGBT community. Our activities are conducted within a context of awareness and acceptance of sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and cultural diversity. The Center OC works to help people reach their human potential through the provision of life-affirming and life-enriching services.
The Center OC is a place where those who need services can come to receive them in a culturally appropriate setting. The Center OC is a place where those who do not need services can connect with other like-minded individuals to strengthen our community. In the spirit of reciprocity, we ask those who have benefited from The Center OC to find a way to give back by investing time, skills, or funds to help future Center clients.
the center oc is a home for everyone
The Center OC is a welcoming home for LGBT youth, adults, and families, as well as for our allies. We offer a safe space to find friendship, support and help.
The Center OC provides leadership development and social programs for youth; low cost mental health counseling in several languages; health education; transgender programming; programs for gay, bi and curious men; programs for lesbians and women who are bisexual or questioning; social events that bring us together for friendship and community building; and much more.
We recognize that direct services alone will not change the climate toward our community in Orange County. For this reason, The Center OC also works at the systems level to create lasting change. We work with medical and mental health providers to help make their practices more LGBT welcoming and culturally competent. We offer workplace trainings to increase understanding of diversity. We partner with other organizations to advocate for social justice. We serve as a hub for many groups, such as PFLAG, that are also working toward LGBT equality and social justice.
We envision a day when all LGBT people in Orange County will feel free to express their true selves, to show up entirely for life, without fear of violence, bullying, or shame. We envision a county where all LGBT people can not only be safe, but can thrive.
Toward this end, and for the exciting journey along the way, we invite you to join our efforts.