LGBTQ+ older adults of color are more likely to be under represented and undeserved due to limited data . Throughout 2012/2013 we conducted focus groups and attended community events to identify effective outreach for engaging LGBTQ+ older adults of color. As an initiative of the LGBT Aging Project, a program at Fenway Health in Boston, in the fall of 2013 we solicited an outreach team of LGBT community stakeholders of color called ourselves “LGBT Elders of Color”. In February 2014 for Black History Month, we launched a social event through word-of-mouth to raise awareness. It was themed “Flashback Sunday”, hearkening back to life in the days when house parties and a few local gay bars were the only outlets for self-expression. We expected about 25-30 people to attend but nearly 100 people showed up. It was an enormous success by any measure and sited by many as “long overdue”. With the support of small grants and private donations, LGBT Elders of Color has held dozens of Flashback Sunday events over the years with a focus on social engagement, inter-generational discussions and information forums for healthy aging and resources.
In 2020 the COVID-19 pandemic had a profound impact on all of us causing the loss of loved ones. Moreover, our in-person activities were suspended creating a landscape of uncertainty and isolation. We used this as an opportunity to create virtual programming and launched "Flashback Cafe" as a virtual monthly activity to keep our community connected. In 2021 we merged with the Multicultural AIDS Coalition providing us with additional resources and sustainability to continue to move forward.
We continue to maintain Flashback Cafe in-person on the 2nd Wednesday monthly at Bruce C Bolling Building, 2300 Washington Street at Nubian Square, Roxbury, MA 02119. We also continue to host two signature in-person "Flashback Sunday" events; June Pride-Awards Luncheon & Dance and a Holiday Party in December.