Rebecca Rolfe on economic issues of the LGBT community

The executive director of the San Francisco LGBT Community Center helped organize an economic development program that helps support small businesses and entrepreneurs. On Tuesday the Center is offering a free workshop for entrepreneurs on social media.

What is the program? It is the first program in the world to address economic concerns in the LGBT community.

Was its conception prompted by the recession? No. We actually started in 2003. One of the reasons to start it was to address the myth of gay affluence. The gay community is largely like the rest of the world. Some have financial resources, but many do not.

What will Tuesday’s economic workshop address? It will address hands-on social media tools for new- and old-school entrepreneurs. It’s for small business owners, and not limited to people in the LGBT community — it’s open to anyone. We will use Twitter, Facebook and blogs to show how people can utilize those resources and help create a broader network.

The LGBT Center’s center has a Facebook page. How has that helped awareness of the center’s events and outreach? It’s one of many marketing tools we use, but we are really seeing a lot of success from Facebook. Folks in the community are keeping up-to-date with resources and current events. We are able to reach a lot of people through updates … We have 2,600 fans.

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