News and Updates

Top LGBTQ-Friendly Colleges for 2018-2019

In a survey of more than 10,000 students identifying as LGBTQ+, the Human Rights Campaign found at least 40 percent said they didn’t feel their community accepted them. Steps have been made in recent years to create a more inclusive world, but LGBTQ+ students must still ensure any college they attend embraces these communities and works diligently to support them.

Keep reading to learn what to look for in prospective schools and see what an expert has to say on the subject.

LGBTQIA Scholarships – Empowering Students & Encouraging Equality


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Many organizations and foundations offer scholarship awards specifically for LGBTQIA students to ensure lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning, intersex and asexual students have the opportunity to pursue higher education. Some opportunities are exclusively for LGBTQIA students, while others may be open to ally and questioning students as well. These awards help students achieve their academic goals while also encouraging diversity and equality on college campuses. But these scholarships also empower students and foster equality on college campuses across the country. Find scholarships for LGBTQIA students and allies and get expert tips on how to increase your chances of winning an award through the Community for Accredited Online Schools.

Big Bend Cares raises money through Artopia

Tallahassee Democrat Published 5:14 p.m. ET June 26, 2017 | Updated 5:16 p.m. ET June 26, 2017

The auction is silent but the impact of Artopia 2017 is immense. Local and regional artists donate their artwork, including a few signed and numbered limited editions. Money raised from the annual event held at the Tucker Civic Center on Saturday benefits Big Bend Cares. The Tallahassee-based nonprofit provides education and comprehensive support to people infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS, serving Gadsden, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Franklin, Taylor, and Wakulla Counties.


Artist Torrey Ella, 20, crafts wire sculptures while attendees of Artopia 2017 file in and out of the venue. (Photo: CD Davidson-Hiers/ Democrat)

Thanks for supporting Artopia!

Thank you to everyone who donated art to Artopia, attended, or took art home with them! Artopia was a huge success, and we are so appreciative of everyone in our #BBCCommunity.

If you won an item, you should have received a text notification letting you know that your bid was the winner. If you did win and were not able to take it with you on Saturday, you are welcome to come by our office anytime during the week from 8-5 to pick it up. Call us if you have any questions or concerns!

AM Break with Ann & Audra

AM Break with Big Bend Cares and Artopia May 25, 2017

How much do we love Charlie Adams?? We don't have the words! So watch this instead and find out what's happening with Big Bend Cares and more about Charlie's second, very special gig that's going to impact our community for the better! (Here's a hint "Care Point"….)Oh, and it's just about time for Artopia 2017!

Posted by AM Break with Ann & Audra on Thursday, May 25, 2017

AM Break with Ann & Audra
May 25 · 

How much do we love Charlie Adams?? We don’t have the words! So watch this instead and find out what’s happening with Big Bend Cares and more about Charlie’s second, very special gig that’s going to impact our community for the better! (Here’s a hint “Care Point”….)
Oh, and it’s just about time for Artopia 2017!

Original video here.

DEP signs off on Care Point cleanup

, Democrat senior writerPublished 1:30 p.m. ET May 10, 2017 | Updated 1:30 p.m. ET May 10, 2017


The state of Florida is signing off on the environmental cleanup at Big Bend Cares new health care facility, which is being built on the site of an old auto shop.

The Department of Environmental Protection told Big Bend Cares in a letter last week it plans to issue a site rehabilitation completion order, signaling completion of the cleanup at Care Point Health and Wellness Center. The $11 million facility, which is under construction on South Monroe Street, is set to open in September.

The project came into the crosshairs of Leon County Commissioner Bill Proctor, who held a news conference with local activist Dr. Ed Holifield in February to blast the environmental cleanup. They asked State Attorney Jack Campbell to investigate, but he passed, saying his general counsel reviewed the matter and found no cause for an investigation.

Rob Renzi, executive director of Big Bend Cares, calls the letter from DEP “complete vindication.” He says the nonprofit went “above and beyond” remediation requirements and noted the cleanup was completed with guidance from DEP and was completed well before Proctor’s press conference. 

Last year, Holifield contacted DEP after reading an environmental report showing benzo(a)pyrene and arsenic in the soil at levels above commercial limits but below residential limits. DEP then ordered Big Bend Cares to conduct a site assessment. Their environmental consultant responded with a report in March saying there was no evidence impacted groundwater and soils need further assessment, remedial action or monitoring.

Proctor questioned the report, however, in a statement sent to the press Monday.

“Only God and Mother Nature truly know how right or wrong the findings of the (consultant) may affect our ecology and the human population,” he wrote. “I hope that God will protect the FAMU students and communities that surround this site including the future patrons that will breathe the air around this site.”


Renzi called Proctor’s comments “inflammatory and slanderous.” He said the District 1 commissioner “has no experience or knowledge” about environmental cleanups.

“The reputation of both Big Bend Cares and the builder, PSBI, were besmirched by these accusations and they deserve to be restored,” Renzi said in an email to the Democrat.

Holifield has lobbed public criticism at Care Point, saying it won’t treat poor and uninsured patients once it opens. But Renzi has denied that accusation, pointing out that Care Point is required to treat the uninsured as part of its agreement with the Community Redevelopment Agency.

“Care Point construction remains on schedule in a safe and clean building site and will provide underserved residents of the south side with access to services, something that the county commissioner in that district should be supportive of,” Renzi said.

Big Bend Cares

2201 S. Monroe St.
Tallahassee, FL 32301

850.656.2437 tel
850.942.6402 fax