The Phillip Rush Center, Atlanta’s own LGBT community center, opened up to the public to show off the new renovations and its large expansion space to the public.

More than 100 people attended throughout the afternoon of Nov. 16 to peruse the changes that included more office space as well as an entirely new event space in a building located across the alley from the center’s administrative offices.

A six-month plan for the Rush Center expansion was announced in April and since then volunteers and staff have renovated a new event space as well as a build out of the current facility on DeKalb Avenue.

The Rush Center, named for longtime LGBT activist Phillip Rush, is a collaborative effort between Georgia Equality and the Health Initiative and is the home for numerous LGBT and progressive organizations as well as provides meeting space for such groups.

AID Atlanta will have a new satellite office in the renovated space where HIV testing will be provided. There is also space for one full-time navigator who helps LGBT and other community members navigate the Affordable Care Act and sign up for healthcare.

SOJOURN, formerly the Rainbow Center, an organization serving the Jewish LGBT community, is also a new addition to the Rush Center and will hold its official opening ceremony on Dec. 3 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Other organizations with offices at the Rush Center include Atlanta Pride, In the Life Atlanta and Transgender Individuals Living Their Truth and JustUs ATL.

Organizations that regularly meet at the Rush Center include the Georgia Safe Schools Coalition and Georgia Benefits Council.

Georgia Equality Executive Director Jeff Graham and Health Initiative Executive Director Linda Ellis praised the efforts of the donors and volunteers who made the expansion possible. Doug Carl, a good friend of the late Phillip Rush, said Nov. 16 the center needed another $22,000 to finish off the last details and more than $17,000 was raised that afternoon.

Donations are always accepted; visit www.rushcenteratl.org for more information.

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