West Shore Aware is a philanthropic organization of Gay men and women and their allies living in Saugatuck/Douglas and the greater West Lakeshore community. The organization is dedicated to increasing the positive influence and public awareness of the contribution that gay men and women make to the community in which they belong.

West Shore Aware was founded in the fall of 2003, and received its 501c3 certification in March of 2004. The main mission of West Shore Aware is to raise funds for local 501c3 charities and organizations within the greater west lakeshore community. We accomplish this mission by hosting a local fundraising event each year, and through contributions from Aware membership, and citizens of the community. West Shore Aware embraces all those within the community, who are friends to and support the gay and lesbian men and women of the area.

In addition West Shore Aware supports a scholarship board of trustees and is associated with Grand Valley State University, where West Shore Aware has awarded annual scholarships to students of GVSU.  In 2013, West Shore Aware Scholarship Board also began awarding annual college scholarships to students of Saugatuck High School.  To learn more about our scholarships, please visit our “Academic Scholarship” page.

Since 2003, our fundraising events, including our annual gala, have enabled West Shore Aware to donate hundreds of thousands of dollars to local charities and organizations. (See list of past beneficiaries as a pull-down link on our “Events/Fundraising” page).  This has been possible due mainly to the generous support West Shore Aware has received from the local community and West Shore Aware membership.

The annual West Shore Aware fundraising event has gained the reputation of being one of the best parties held within the west lakeshore community. It is our plan and desire to continue to build upon that fine reputation, and to continue to raise funds for local charities and organizations within our community. In addition we wish to grow our membership that does so much to insure the success of the organization, and provides help for the annual fundraising event. We hope to expand our scholarship funds to someday include more students and be able to make larger grants.

We encourage all members of the gay and lesbian community, and those who are friends to the gay and lesbian community, to become involved with West Shore Aware either by joining the organizations membership or by attending the annual fundraising event or both.

It is our desire to continue making a positive contribution to the community in which we live for many years to come.