LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – June is known as Pride month, and it’s is about the promotion of the self-affirmation, equality, and increased visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people as a social group, taking away the stigma and bolstering the LGBTQ+ rights movement.

On the campus of Eastern Kentucky University, those big picture changes start with meeting the most basic needs.

“We really just love the opportunity to make students feel more comfortable because statistics show there’s less rates of suicide and students just generally that are happier and more involved on campus and feel comfortable are going to finish out their degree and be more successful once they graduate,” Assistant Director of the Office of Student Life and First Year Experience Dylan Bogard said.

It’s part of the campus’ food pantry for all students, the Colonel’s Cupboard.

But, Closet TransForm focuses specifically on gender affirming clothing and accessories for LGBTQ+ students.

“This is the first year we were able to have some binders and packers that we could buy from some development funds and really be able to help students get those accessories that they need to feel comfortable in their own skin,” Bogard said.

The clothing bank is in the process of moving to a more accessible location in the Powell Student Center.

There, any student in need can walk in for things like food, toiletries, and clothing for free.

“If they’re a little bit shy or apprehensive, they can make a private appointment during some designated times as well,” Bogard said.

Each person served is one step closer to making every student at EKU feel comfortable on campus and proud of who they are.

“When they walk across the stage at graduation day, that’s what it’s all about, and we know that we’ve helped those students get there,” Bogard said.

The pantry is running mostly on donations.

So, for anyone who wants to get involved by donating or for students who need some of the items they supply, find their contact information on EKU’s student life website.

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