What is SAGE Table?
SAGE Table is a special one-day event that asks you to share a meal with LGBT people and allies of different generations. Simply sitting down to a table together gives us all a chance to have conversations that many of us have never had before. As we build connections among LGBT people of all ages, we strengthen our community ties, learn more about how we can care for each other, and forge new traditions.
SAGE Table was created with strong support from AARP. We believe that thriving together means learning how to tap into all of the diverse ways that our communities care for each other.
Why should I participate?
On a typical day, very few of us in the LGBT community cross paths in a meaningful way with LGBT people from other generations. So many of us don’t have children to care for us as we age or families that support us fully. Too many of us will go through different stages of our lives without some measure of support that only someone of another generation could provide. What unique experiences do you have—and talents that someone else needs—that you will bring to the table?
SAGE and AARP want to cut across the age boundaries of our day-to-day lives in a positive and profound way. Simply sharing a meal together gives us a chance to have conversations that many of us have never had before. As we build connections among LGBT people of all ages, we strengthen our community ties and forge new traditions. By agreeing to participate in a SAGE Table conversation, you’ve already taken an important step to be part of this movement.
How do I participate?
Go to sagetable.org and sign up. Our suite of event management tools make hosting or joining a Table incredibly easy.
Can I sign up to be a guest but not a host?
Absolutely! Go to sagetable.org/yourtable and browse SAGE Tables near you. Ask to join an open Table. When hosts create their event, they decide if they want to open up their SAGE Table to invite guests they don’t know and indicate how many extra seats are available. We’re also linking up with community partners across the country to create public SAGE Tables that you can drop into.
What if I don’t know any older or younger people?
This question is at the heart of SAGE Table. All of us, all across the country, are too often isolated from each other. SAGE Table is more than just a fun party, it’s building inroads that just don’t exist. As we connect for SAGE Table, we are creating a map of a stronger community, together.
If you don’t know where to find folks of other generations, our tools will help! Our host toolkit offers guidance for where to start looking if you want to expand your own network, and our event management software offers options to join or host an open Table. Doing so is sure to make you some fabulous new contacts. Join our weekly webinar for more tips and tricks about who to invite and where to find them!
Where is it happening?
Wherever you want to meet up and eat, your table becomes a SAGE Table. You can invite guests into your home, make a reservation at a neighborhood restaurant, organize a potluck at your place of worship, order a foot-long at the office with coworkers, or share pizza slices at a community organization.
No matter where you meet, SAGE will help to make sure that you are at a table with folks of all ages and that you have the tools you need to make the most out of this opportunity.
Are allies welcome?
Yes! Allies are and always have been an integral part of our community and our extended families. Each host will decide for themselves how many allies they bring to the table, and our discussion guide can help inspire you to integrate different perspectives into your gathering.
Can I participate with a group of coworkers?
Absolutely. Most of us spend our workdays with a diverse group of folks that play huge parts in our daily lives. Pulling together for a lunchtime meal and discussion is a great opportunity to sit down and get to know your coworkers in a different light. If you belong to an ERG, please check out our community partner FAQ for ideas of how to go big for your Table.
Can organizations and corporations hosts dinners?
Our partners are important conveners in communities across the country, and we absolutely welcome the opportunity to grow our partner network. There are benefits to becoming a community partner according to how many guests you can host; find out more in our partner FAQ online. Our site enables organizations and corporations to post public, private, and semi-public SAGE Table events. There are three options:
- Keep the event invite only;
- Enable guests from your area to request a seat; or
- Offer seats that can be filled on a first come, first registered basis.
Is there a cost to attend?
There’s no cost related to the event, but we do ask that the host ensure that everyone will have food—just as you would with any party you host! There are many ways to keep food costs down; you might choose to have a potluck where everyone brings a dish, meet at a restaurant and split the bill, or apply for a small grant to provide a top-notch meal. No matter what, this is not a fund-raiser—it’s a friend-raiser. If you’re looking for ideas about how you can make your Table fabulous, join our weekly webinar for skill sharing with other hosts, as well as tips and tricks from SAGE staff!
What will be discussed?
Each host will create an event best suited to their table. If there’s a topic that stands out for you and your community, don’t hesitate to build a dinner around that. For instance, your host might craft a conversation around what is particular to the LGBT experience at different ages within your profession, or what your apartment building would look like if older and younger LGBT people helped each other out with tasks at home. Our Discussion Guide provides helpful icebreakers and questions for prompting intriguing conversation at your SAGE Table.
How can I get involved?
- Sign up to be a host. It’s easy, and there are so many ways to throw a fabulous SAGE Table event.
- Sign up to be a guest. Browse the site to see if someone has seats for a gathering they are hosting in your area.
Become an ambassador for SAGE Table in your community and help us to ensure that no one is left out. When you encourage individuals and organizations in your area to participate, you help us reach those in our community who might be the most isolated.
- Post a video on social media that tells us why YOU are hosting or going to a SAGE Table. When you use the tag #SAGEtable on a public post, we’ll feature it on our website. It’s quick and easy to do on your phone, and it needn’t be long (10-90 seconds is perfect)!
Can I participate anywhere?
Yes! Much like our LGBT elders, SAGE Table is everywhere and has a big future. We’re building a movement that aims to reach all of our beautiful community family, because we refuse to be invisible.
Where can I find more information about SAGE Table?
What is SAGE?
Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders is the country’s largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) older adults. Founded in 1978 and headquartered in New York City, SAGE is a national organization that offers supportive services and resources for LGBT older adults and their caregivers, advocates for public policy changes that address the needs of LGBT older people, and provides training for aging providers and LGBT organizations. SAGE works to promote positive images of LGBT life in later years. To learn more, visit us at www.sageusa.org.
What is AARP?
AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of nearly 38 million that helps people turn their goals and dreams into ‘Real Possibilities’ by changing the way America defines aging. With staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, AARP works to strengthen communities and promote the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare security, financial security and personal fulfillment. AARP also advocates for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name. As a trusted source for news and information, AARP produces the world’s largest circulation magazine, AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org or follow @aarp and our CEO @JoAnn_Jenkins on Twitter.