Helping Hand Program

First Time?

Nervous? Need a friend with a warm smile? If you are feeling a bit faint-hearted, consider connecting with Lake Erie Gala's Helping Hand program. These volunteers are here to answer questions and help put aside any fears you may have about facing the world as you take those first steps out of the 'proverbial closet.' They can be your first contact here at Lake Erie Gala and can help get you through that initial trepidation you might have. They are neither babysitters nor guidance counselors, but rather a friendly face with a warm heart that can help give you a good advice beginning. If this is your first time, we're sure you are feeling extremely apprehensive, worried and nervous about being in a public setting. Well, our goal is to provide a meaningful and enjoyable opportunity so that you will feel comfortable with yourself.

Being nervous is expected and we promise to do all we can to help alleviate your anxiety. The number of people, information and activities can be overwhelming and you may find yourself wanting to slink away to your room to hide quietly especially when you don't know anyone. But remember, the Lake Erie Gala is what you make it. Please try to reach out and introduce yourself. Once you do, you'll quickly find that the people you meet are real and that you'll share common history and experiences. We guarantee you will develop honest and true friendships faster than you every have in your life. We all have known at one point the anxiety of keeping this 'secret'. Share yours and let go of that toxic shame and guilt!

Our Lake Erie Gala Helping Hand Volunteers are here to help you get through that initial trepidation and assist you in making that first step out. Staring at a hotel door for hours or days is not very much fun so we encourage you to open that door and take that big step out of your room to enjoy everything the Lake Erie Gala has to offer.

Email us at or see the board of important numbers located in the Sheraton 2nd floor Reception Hall if you would like a Helping Hand Volunteer or to ask any other questions.