Burning Bowl 2020 “Homecoming”

Burning Bowl 2020 “Homecoming”
Join us for our annual Burning Bowl event! This year we’ll gather to celebrate Affinity’s 25th year together! We’re burning the old and setting in motion the positive changes we want to see in ourselves, our community and the world. 

When:  Saturday, January 11, 2020 from 1:00 – 4:00PMWhere: Charles Hayes Center, 4859 S Wabash Ave, Chicago, 60615Cost: Free, lunch served 
Save time and RSVP now instead of Saturday!

If you register by 12:00PM on Friday, January 10th, you will be entered to win an Affinity shirt with our new branding! 

Ann-Morgan Rowell to receive the Robbie Smith Award!  
Ann Rowell is is a longtime Affinity supporter, and peer leader for Affinity’s longest running peer-led group, 40 Plus. 

The Drum Divas are Back! 
The Drum Divas are a dynamic collective of women who have come together to rejoice in the art of percussive music. Drum Divas focus is to create original drum songs with a goal of planetary healing.  

A Poetry Reading from e. nina jay!  e nina jay defines herself as a black womon lesbian poet.  Her desire is to break silences around the many different forms of violence against black gurls & womyn.

Keynote Address by Imani Rupert-Gordon
Affinity’s Executive Director will deliver the Keynote address and her farewell to Affinity!

Trans Clothing Swap

Trans Clothing Swap

Today was a great day at Affinity. Folks felt affirmed as we learned quick ways to fold shirts and taught each other different knots to tying a tie. We talked about the fit and gave advice about what works. Folks went home with suits and dresses. Today was successful and we are proud to bring an event like this to the Affinity space.

Here is a Spectrum member trying on a shirt that went well with their boots!!

3rd Annual Black Gold Casino Night

3rd Annual Black Gold Casino Night

What a success!

Black Gold had something for everyone! We had raffles, a live DJ, and dancing. Plus, for the first time, we honored the top 3 casino game winners. This means 3 people took home a coveted Affinity Community Services Black Gold Trophy this year!

A big thank you to everyone who supported Black Gold.

Check out some of the pics!

Affinity’s State of the Union

Affinity’s State of the Union

Affinity’s State of the Union is your opportunity to hear what Affinity is working on and how you can get involved!

Did you miss it?
View the slides here and watch the video below.

Affinity is Hiring!

Affinity is Hiring!

TITLE:              Program Coordinator
STATUS:          Part-time, 20 hours/week

Affinity Community Services is a social justice organization serving the needs of the Black LGBTQ community of Chicago with a particular focus on Black LGBTQ women.


The program coordinator is responsible for supporting the implementation and success of ACS programming and initiatives.

With guidance from the executive director, the program coordinator will implement programs, guide initiatives, maintain social media accounts and support community outreach initiatives. This position will provide other duties as assigned.

This position reports directly to the executive director.


Program Development

  • Support creation, development, implementation, and evaluation of all programming at ACS.
  • Responsible for day to day management of programs with support of the executive director.
  • Assist in the development and implementation of ACS’s public policy agenda to advocate for changes in institutional policies/practices and legislative reforms to support Black LGBTQ+ women.
  • Create brochures, programs, flyers, online events, and resource guides associated with ACS.  


  • Contribute to the creation and execution of strategic and operational plans.
  • Contribute to the development of agency wide policy and procedures.
  • Prepare program reports for executive director and ACS Board of Directors.
  • Help to develop strategic partnerships with people, organizations and businesses that share ACS mission, goals and values.
  • Revise and maintain employee handbook in partnership with executive director.
  • Contribute to the development, implementation, and assessment of ACS’s volunteer program at ACS.
  • Develop a resource guide supporting Black LGBTQ+ older adults.
  • Serve as a contact for ACS peer leaders.
  • Assist in training and technical assistance as needed.
  • Assist in producing special events including not limited to Burning Bowl, Black Equal Pay Day, Black Gold, Old School Dance, LGBTQ+ Care Fair, Senior Luncheon and Pride events.
  • Supervise interns/volunteers as appropriate.
  • Provide event support when necessary, including basic volunteer duties.

Public Relations

  • Assist in the implementation of marketing strategy, including production of all agency marketing collateral (print to online) and special communications such as press releases, newsletters, and public statements.
  • Develop a social media strategy with the assistance of the executive director and marketing committee.
  • Manage and maintain all social media accounts.
  • Produce a monthly newsletter to connect to constituents.
  • Assist in communication to ACS donors.
  • Maintain high level of individual and agency visibility through in-person community engagement.


This position requires a diverse set of skills. The ideal candidate will have expertise in leadership development, project management, community building, event planning, and social media strategy. These skills may be obtained through formal educational background, work experience, lived experience, or a combination of developing these skills.

In addition, the ideal candidate will have:

  • Professional experience working with Black LGBTQ+ women, Black people, people of color, and LGBTQ+ community.
  • Knowledge of social determinants of health that impact Black LGBTQ+ women.
  • Ability to develop structural-level interventions and evidence-based/informed programming, and evaluation.
  • Comprehensive understanding of intersections of identity, feminist and womanist theory.  
  • Commitment to racial justice, LGBTQ+ equality, health equity social justice and intersections of identity.
  • Ability to work effectively independently and in groups.
  • Ability to develop and maintain relationships with nonprofit, community, and business leaders.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, and positive attitude.
  • Strong writing skills and proficiency with Microsoft Suite.
  • Ambitious and desire to grow as professional community leader.


$20/hour based on a 15-20 hour work week.  Employment at ACS doesn’t constitute a contract of employment. ACS may exercise its employment-at-will rights at any time.


Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis (although we encourage candidates to submit their materials as soon as possible). To apply, send the following in one email to Imani Rupert-Gordon at Imani@affinity95.org:

  • Resume listing relevant experience
  • Cover letter describing how your skills and experience align with this position
  • List of 3 professional references

Living Room Chats at Affinity: A Podcast for Brave Conversations and Bold Voices

Living Room Chats at Affinity: A Podcast for Brave Conversations and Bold Voices

Living Room Chats is a new monthly podcast hosted by Kelly Suzanne Saulsberry. You can tune-in on Affinity’s Facebook page every third Wednesday at 7pm CT.

“Living Room Chats” will feature conversations with dynamic individuals from a variety of perspectives, backgrounds, and walks of life. Some of the topics we’ll dive into include political advocacy, culture, identity, and spirituality.

Each of us has a story. Each of us has questions we ask ourselves and others. Each of us has things we aspire to, issues and principles we are for or against, and existential questions we ponder. Each of us has identities that shape how we perceive each other and ourselves.

In this time of divisive and vitriolic rhetoric, hyper curated networks on social media, and a heightened sensitivity that makes some of us afraid to say anything, there is a real need for brave conversations and bold voices that push us beyond talking points and stereotypes, and empower us instead to think critically, feel deeply, and speak candidly about our thoughts, experiences, and lives.

This is the mission of Living Room Chats at Affinity. We are excited about bringing these conversations from our living room into yours, and hope that this podcast will inspire you to have brave and bold conversations of your own with people in your lives.