Old Lesbians Organizing For Change – An International Community Of Lesbian Elders.
Posted on June 25, 2022
OLOC promotes Old Lesbian visibility. We exist and we call ourselves Old Lesbians to have our name out in the public sphere. We provide Old Lesbians with the chance to meet like-minded women in our common struggle to confront ageism, share mutual interests, and experience the joy and warmth of playing and working together.
To date, we have produced nine National Gatherings where we:
- Provided financial assistance to dozens of women to enable them to attend
- Provided disability services for attendees.
- Held workshops and plenary sessions on anti-racism and anti-classism, among many other topics
- Presented the Del Martin Old Lesbian Pride Award.
- We produced four Regional Gatherings in years when no National Gatherings occurred
- We promote Old Lesbian visibility by attending conferences of other national and local organizations, presenting workshops on ageism and networking on issues of mutual concern
- We reach out to living facilities, retirement homes, and nursing homes to ensure that Old Lesbians stay visible
- We endorse and promote specific policy changes of importance to Old Lesbians
- We publish a quarterly print newsletter and monthly E-News.
- We operate a website with numerous resources on Lesbians and aging, a list of feminist bookstores, and extensive Internet links.
- We provide members with the opportunity to participate in an email group as a discussion and information sharing forum.
- We maintain a Media Library of 100 movies (currently) available for free home use. In addition, the Library has other media such as radio shows, music, and DVDs from pre-OLOC conferences and National Gatherings
- We provide support to the Old Lesbian Oral Herstory Project
- We honor Old Lesbians who have died in our Memorial Slide show, which we run at National Gatherings
- We sell Old Lesbian t-shirts and other items that promote Old Lesbian visibility with messages such as “This Is What An Old Lesbian Looks Like” in large, prominent print
- Our Research Gatekeeper vets requests for our participation in Lesbian research to ensure it will benefit and include Old Lesbians before recommending participation to our affiliates
- We send birthday cards with positive images of Old Lesbians to affiliates who may not receive many cards from others if they are particularly isolated.
OLOC offers the strength that comes from having a national identity and connection with sisters in many places
We provide newsletters, brochures, cards, and other OLOC materials to distribute at events and to individuals and chapters.
We conduct regular Chapter Coordinators conference calls.
Chapters are autonomous and choose their own focus. Some work in coalition with groups in their communities, confronting ageism, racism, classism, and other forms of oppression. Other chapters focus on social activities, which develop a sense of community and support. Some choose street activism such as marching in pride parades and participating in events to support #Black Lives Matter, NAACP Journey for Justice, #Black Women’s Lives Matter, and other issues.
We provide OLOC banners and financial assistance with rent for meeting space
We allow chapters to join OLOC regardless of their ability to pay dues.
These programs and services are made possible by a primarily volunteer group of Old Lesbians, coordinated by a part-time Administrator. Funding is provided by affiliate and chapter donations and dues, as well as grants and other sources of revenue.
Michiko Bailey Thorne – Oakland, CA
Sally Tatnall – Lyndhurst, OH
Alí Marrero Calderón – Bayamon, PR
María Cora – San Lorenzo, CA