Despite the quarantine, May-Ling Ben continues to make sure Black and Brown LGBTQ+ youth know they are loved, protected, and advocated for.

While many of us had to put our everyday routines on hold when the pandemic hit, some of us were called to action. May-Ling Ben is a housing case manager for the Hetrick-Martin Institute based in New York City. She ensures that LGBTQ+ homeless youth have a safety net and lifeline directly connected to HMI and the communities in which they dwell. She focuses her efforts around helping young people find stability in a world that feels increasingly hostile and more dangerous to LGBTQ+ Black and Brown young people each day. 

May-Ling advocates for these young people by communicating their needs and challenges to community leaders, funders, and those who have the ability to effect change. “There is nothing more fulfilling and supportive than being around your community… I want to see us grow. I want to make sure we’re safe, because I know I have a right to be who I am.”

Though the physical celebration of Pride was different this year, we wanted to make sure May-Ling received recognition for all that she does to support LGBTQ+ youth and her community.

Hetrick-Martin Institute will receive  a donation from New York Life in May-Ling’s name. She and five others, representing nonprofits across the country, will receive donations from the company as part of the Love Takes Action series for supporting their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Watch the next episode of our new series, "Love Takes Action," featuring May-Ling Ben here.

Go back to our newsroom to read more stories.

Lacey Siegel
New York Life Insurance Company
(212) 576-7937

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