You Can Play

Gay athletes. Straight allies. Teaming up for respect.

Get Help

If you’re an LGBT athlete and need assistance because of violence, the potential for suicide or other life-threatening issues, don’t wait to take action. Call your local authorities or to speak with someone to prevent suicide, contact The Trevor Project at 1 (866) 488-7386 or visit www.thetrevorproject.org.

If you’re struggling with sexuality and would like to speak with another athlete, GForce Sports provides an Athlete Buddy System to give one-on-one support, a speakers bureau and a listing of sports-oriented blogs. Visit www.gforcesports.org for information.

Help You Can Play by Making Your Own Video

You Can Play encourages teams, schools and sports fans at every level to participate in the You Can Play Project. Here are some tips for making a great video.

1. Say what you feel. We ask video producers and scriptwriters to use the “If you can play, you can play” tagline at least once. But, other than that, the video is yours – it doesn’t have to be “If you can skate, you can skate…”. Tell us about your experience as an athlete or fan. Tell everyone why you think You Can Play is important. Let everyone know that your story is personal. A combination of personal experience, some good thought, and your own words is the best way to let everyone know that LGBT athletes and straight allies are all on the same team.

2. If you’re with a school and want to make a video, look for help from departments and fellow students in the communications, art or computer fields. Invite their help in creating videos. Colleges and universities may have public relations departments that can help produce a video. And, some local TV stations can offer help. Great videos are judged on content, though, so if you don’t have professional help, your camera phone will get the job done. You Can Play is a small non-profit organization and we don’t have budget to assist in producing videos. We’re glad to offer help in putting a script together.

3. You are welcome to use the finished video as you see fit. If your school wants to use the video before games, as part of gay-straight alliance projects or any other cause, you don’t need You Can Play permission to do so. We would love to hear what you’re doing, though, so please do send us updates.

4. When you’re ready for your video to go live, let us know. Send a note to Brian@YouCanPlayProject.org for directions on uploading your video to our FTP site. Convert it to the smallest possible MPEG or video file – use a program like Quicktime or Quicktime Pro to export your video for Internet use. 100 MG files or smaller are preferred. Clearly label your video so we’ll know which school or team it is. And, send  a few lines about who is in your video, something about your team or school, and why you made the video. You Can Play will edit and get it posted. We would prefer that your video “lives” on the You Can Play website so we’d rather have the file directly rather than a YouTube link to your own page. And, videos that premiere on our page get front-page treatment.

5. Have fun! Sports are meant to be fun and we want your participation in this project to be enjoyable. Everyone wins when your video shows the spirit of sport and the honesty and care in your thoughts. We appreciate your support.

Partnerships

We would also invite you to visit the websites of a number of those working toward the goals of inclusion, equality and respect – a partial listing is below – and we encourage others to contact us for support and partnerships.

Bra{che the Silence Campaign – supporting inclusion in college sports.  Visit FreedomSounds.org

Equality Coaching Alliance – For coaches to discuss LGBT coaching issues.  Visit equalitycoachingalliance.blogspot.com

OutSports.com – the leading website for LGBT sports fans

StandUpFoundation.com – dedicated to rugby star Ben Cohen’s anti-bullying effort

TheAllyCoalition.org – Music, fashion and entertainment teaming up to support LGBT fans

Organizations Supporting LGBT Athletes

PFLAG – Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays - A longtime resource for parents and families. Visit PFLAG.org

GLAAD – Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation - Providing support for the LGBT community through media. Visit glaad.org

GLSEN – Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network - Providing support for parents, teachers and students, the Changing the Game has a sports focus. Visit GLSEN.org

NCLR - National Center for Lesbian Rights - Providing support for lesbians, family and friends.  Visit www.nclrights.org.

HRC - The Human Rights campaign is an organization advocating for LGBT issues on a variety of levels.  Visit HRC.org