Guide to COLAGE (Children Of Lesbians And Gays Everywhere)

Justin M. Edgar
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society
657 Mission Street, Suite 300
San Francisco, California 94105
Phone: (415) 777-5455
Fax: (415) 777-5576
Email: info@glbthistory.org
URL: http://www.glbthistory.org/
© 2008
The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society. All rights reserved.

Guide to COLAGE (Children Of Lesbians And Gays Everywhere)

Collection number: 2001-04

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society

San Francisco, California
Processed by:
Justin M. Edgar
Date Completed:
08/07/08
Encoded by:
Justin M. Edgar
© 2008 The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: COLAGE (Children Of Lesbians And Gays Everywhere)
Dates: 1982 -- 2000
Bulk Dates: 1990 -- 1996
Collection number: 2001-04
Creator: COLAGE
Collection Size: 1.67 linear feet 1 Carton + 1 Manuscript box
Repository: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society
San Francisco, California 94105
Abstract: This collection contains records of the ancestry, emergence, and activities of the organization, COLAGE from 1982 to 2000. The bulk of the collection is from 1990 to 1996. The content of the collection focuses on the organization�s newsletters, annual conferences, and advocacy work on issues related to custody and adoption rights of gay and lesbian parents. The collection includes newsletters, conference and other events papers, membership surveys, member manuscripts, issues papers including court case transcripts, and operational papers documenting the evolution of the organization.
Physical location: Stored at the Archives of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society in San Francisco, California
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

Access

Collection open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright to unpublished manuscript materials has been transferred to the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], COLAGE (Children Of Lesbians And Gays Everywhere), 2001-04, The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.

Acquisition Information

Donated to the GLBTHS by Felicia Park-Rogers, Director of COLAGE, on January 16, 2001.

Biography / Administrative History

COLAGE (Children Of Lesbians And Gays Everywhere) emerged in 1990, from within a larger organization of gay and lesbian parents (GLPCI). GLPCI was originally (1982) called Gay Fathers Coalition, but the group changed its name to Gay and Lesbian Parents Coalition International (GLPCI) in 1987. Among other activities, GLPCI held annual conferences around the country that provided a forum for gay and lesbian parents (and their children) to meet and discuss issues and challenges of being a gay or lesbian parent as well as being the child of a gay and/or lesbian parent. At the 1989 annual conference, several of the children made the parents aware that they had issues that were not being addressed. They made the request to organize and set the agenda for the youth activities at annual conferences. The parents agreed and the group, Just For Us (JFU), led by Hope Berry and Emily Gmerek, was formed. Just For Us created a self-titled newsletter that was made up of the writings and artwork of its members. By 1993, Just For Us was conducting mid-year steering committee meetings, developing a mission statement, connecting children with resources and support services, as well as organizing the annual youth conference (held at the same time and place as the GLPCI annual conferences). It was at this time that Just For Us also decided to change its name to COLAGE. The organization established a national headquarters in San Francisco in 1995. Stefan Lynch, formerly the newsletter editor, stepped into the role of director as a volunteer. In 1997, Felicia Park-Rogers was the first hired director. It is beyond the scope of this collection, but COLAGE organized as a distinct 501(c)3 in 1999. As of 2008, COLAGE includes members of all ages, and continues to work to support children of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender parents.

Scope and Content of Collection

This collection contains records of the ancestry, emergence, and activities of the organization, COLAGE from 1982 to 2000. The bulk of the collection is from 1990 to 1996. The content of the collection focuses on the organization�s newsletters, annual conferences, and advocacy work on issues related to custody and adoption rights of gay and lesbian parents. Newsletters Just For Us was the name of the main newsletter for the organization, but others such as COLAGE Notes, and Second Generation were created by organization members and are included. There does not appear to a complete run of any title. Some issues do not include dates so their location in the chronology has been approximated. The newsletters contain stories of personal experience, poetry and prose, as well as resource information and event information. Events Besides the annual conferences, the organization held several events including fundraisers, a family brunch, and a play (written and performed by group members). Operations Minutes from steering committee meetings are evidence of how the organization was developed, its priorities, and planning strategies. There are a number of membership surveys that collected information about COLAGE members and their experiences. Issues There are five folders of material related to issues COLAGE took action on. They include responses to CA Gov. Pete Wilson�s moves to ban adoption by gays and lesbians as well as specific court cases dealing with adoption and custody by gay and lesbian parents. Publicity There are a number of periodicals and publications that include COLAGE or address issues concerning their community.

Arrangement

This collection is organized in 3 series:
  • Series 1. COLAGE
  • 1.1 Operations
  • 1.2 Events
  • 1.3 Programs
  • 1.4 Issues
  • 1.5 Membership MSS
  • 1.6 Finance
  • 1.7 Newsletters and Mailings
  • 1.8 Publicity and Related Organizations
  • Series 2. JFU
  • 2.1 Operations
  • 2.2 Events
  • 2.3 Newsletters and Mailings
  • Series 3. GLPCI
  • 3.1 Operations
  • 3.2 Programs
  • 3.3 Finance
  • 3.4 Newsletters and Mailings

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Children of gay parents
Gay fathers
Lesbian mothers
Transsexual parents

  • Newsletters:
  • Children of Lesbians and Gays Everywhere - Just for Us
  • Children of Lesbians and Gays Everywhere - Kids Club Fun Pages
  • Children of Lesbians and Gays Everywhere - COLAGE Notes

Collection Contents

box 1-2

COLAGE 1993 -- 2000 1994 -- 1996

Creator: COLAGE
Physical Description: 65 folders

Series Scope and Content Summary

COLAGE was a group formed and operated by the young people that made up its membership. The minutes and reports within this subseries document the early formation of COLAGE as a semi-independent organization. While still dependent on the parent organization, GLPCI, for much of the financing, a small group of young people from across the country (and Canada), were able to establish plans and priorities in order to grow the organization. The minutes from the Mid-Year Meetings track the achievements in the basic formation of COLAGE. Steering Committee minutes are more focused on the agendas for the annual conferences and include post-conference evaluations. The Director�s Reports to the board of GLPCI highlight COLAGE�s achievements and goals. Membership surveys were conducted and there are many in this collection. They document basic demographics as well as individual circumstances of young people with gay/lesbian parents. Hope Berry, Emily Gmereck, Stefan Lynch, Anna Heller, Molly Heller, Linda Columbus, Gunnard Duboze, and Dave Shaw were all active members of the board.
box 2

JFU 1990 -- 1995 1991 -- 1993

Creator: Just For Us
Physical Description: 17 folders

Series Scope and Content Summary

Several independent groups around the country, created to meet the needs of kids of gay and lesbian parents, took the same name: Just For Us. After the Annual Conference at which the kids asked for a role in forming their agenda, they formed a single group under the same title. They also created and distributed a newsletter. The collection contains newsletters from 1990-ca.1995, but due to irregular numbering of issues, it cannot be determined if the run is complete. The series also includes correspondence, organizational information, and papers related to the Annual Conferences.
box 2

GLPCI 1982 -- 1999 1993 -- 1996

Creator: Gay and Lesbian Parents Coalition Int.
Physical Description: 14 folders

Series Scope and Content Summary

In 1982, the Gay Fathers Coalition officially incorporated. The group evolved and changed its name to Gay and Lesbian Parents Coalition, International. GLPCI was a group for gay and lesbian parents. Eventually, the children of those parents organized as Just For Us, which became COLAGE. This series contains mostly organizational and financial papers. There are newsletters and director reports, as well as board meeting minutes.