Marriott International Expands Global Commitment to Help End LGBTIQ Youth Homelessness

Jul 2021

Commits $250K Contribution to True Colors United

New York, NY, July 12, 2021 – Today, Marriott International, Inc. and True Colors United announced their expanded support to help end homelessness among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer/questioning (LGBTIQ) youth. Over the next two years, Marriott will contribute a total of $250,000 to elevate its support of True Colors United’s work internationally. 

“While we’re beginning to understand the prevalence of the issue, there remains a distinct lack of data for most of the world and for us this is simply unacceptable,” says Gregory Lewis, Executive Director & CEO of True Colors United.  “Just as youth homelessness looks different in different communities across the world, the solutions to it will look different too. Marriott’s support will enable us to build partnerships with leaders and organizations on the ground. These relationships are an essential piece to creating the solutions necessary to end homelessness among LGBTIQ youth – ensuring that the solutions developed are rooted in the community’s actual needs.”

“Marriott remains committed to not only celebrating diversity and social good, but also advocating for inclusion, equality, peace and human rights,” said Cherilyn Williams, Senior Director of Purpose Driven Marketing & Consumer Operations at Marriott International. “Like True Colors United, we believe in a world where every LGBTIQ young person, wherever they live, is celebrated for being their authentic selves.”

Williams added, “As a leader in the hospitality industry, we take seriously our responsibility to help drive real change for this community – and not simply during Pride season.” 

Over the past two years, True Colors United has strengthened its efforts to end LGBTIQ youth homelessness globally. With initial work underway in Central America and Europe, Marriott’s support now enables True Colors United to expand its capacity, its expertise and reach even further across the globe. This year and next, True Colors United staff will invest its global resources to better overcome barriers and reinforce its mission to end LGBTIQ youth homelessness. 

Over the past four years, Marriott International has been a core supporter of True Colors United’s efforts to end LGBTIQ youth homelessness – providing funding enabling the organization to grow its work in the United States. The generous, added support between Marriott and True Colors United will allow the organization to not only better understand the scope and impact of LGBTIQ youth homelessness worldwide but to contribute to innovative solutions.

LGBTIQ youth homelessness is often referred to as an “invisible issue” – one hidden from plain sight and historically challenging to address.  The lack of available support is of concern globally.   

A survey of 71 organizations across 32 European countries found that over 60% have worked with LGBTIQ youth experiencing homelessness. Nearly three-quarters (72%) of respondents indicated that no national policy exists specifically addressing the issue of LGBTI youth homelessness and over half of respondents (59%) reported a lack of governmental support for programs that focus on LGBTI youth homelessness, including nearly half (47%) reporting a lack of funding for such programs.

Beginning today, Marriott Bonvoy members are welcomed to show their support for this community and the mission of the organization by donating their points. All Marriott Bonvoy point donations will be converted to cash and shared with the organization. Members are encouraged to visit here. 

About True Colors United: True Colors United was co-founded in 2008 by Cyndi Lauper. We implement innovative solutions to youth homelessness that focus on the unique experiences of LGBTIQ young people. Through a broad array of training and education, youth action, technical assistance, and advocacy programs, True Colors United is creating a world where all young people can be their true selves.

About Marriott International: Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of more than 7,600 properties under 30 leading brands spanning 133 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company offers Marriott Bonvoy™, its highly-awarded travel program. For more information, please visit our website at, and for the latest company news, visit In addition, connect with us on Facebook and @MarriottIntl on Twitter and Instagram.