Planning Ahead for Dementia: A Personal Journey with Mild Cognitive Impairment.

In The Spotlight: PALS Steering Committee Member Lorraine Carlson

Helping Lesbians and LGBTQ Seniors

Laine Henry

Palm Springs Desert Sun USA TODAY NETWORK

When Lorraine Carlson moved to the Coachella Valley in July of 2017, she wanted to give back to the community and get involved, especially after retiring from working for more than 50 years of her life.

She chose to volunteer for the LFund and PALS (Planning Ahead for LGBTQ Seniors). “There?s a theme,” Carlson says, “particularly within the LFund and PALS. It?s about being involved with a community that cares for each other. With PALS, it?s seniors and with the L-Fund, it?s all age groups. It?s about plugging in and doing for others what others don?t do for them.” The L-Fund is a nonprofit lesbian philanthropic organization that was created in 2012 to help resolve short-term financial crises. They can help with financial assistance, such as providing money for food or for rent. The organization also assists students through their L-Fund Education Assistance Program (LEAP), by providing grants of up to $2,500 per person for education assistance. This can help young women, who may have been disowned by their families or may not have the financial resources, to advance their education. The program also helps women pay for training or certification to further existing careers.

Carlson volunteers on several LFund committees and is also on the LFund advisory board, a group of volunteers who help with events, selling tickets, getting sponsorship, getting silent auction items and spreading the word about the events.

The other organization Carlson is passionate about is PALS, a nonprofit that assists LGBTQ seniors with housing, food, medical services and support. In addition to working to break down ageism, sexism and isolation, the organization?s mission is to promote planning ahead before a health event, to create a network of people who look out for each other.

Carlson says volunteering her time not only makes her feel good, it “makes me feel like I?m getting something done.”

In addition to helping underserved lesbians and LGBTQ seniors, Carlson is politically involved with several organizations in the community, such as the

Courageous Resistance Palms Springs & Other Desert Cities, and she donates her time for political causes for Joy Silver?s campaign.

For more information about the LFund, call (760) 304-8487 or visit lfund. org. For more information on PALS, visit palsinthedesert.com.