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Storm-wrecked NY gay youth center gets quick help

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Photo -   In this Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012 photo, Barbie Wilson, left, and Giovanni Stanley wait for appointments at the Ali Forney Center, relocated inside The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Center due to Superstorm Sandy, in New York. Sandy destroyed the old center, but a social media outpouring helped raise money for a new, bigger center. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
In this Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012 photo, Barbie Wilson, left, and Giovanni Stanley wait for appointments at the Ali Forney Center, relocated inside The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Center due to Superstorm Sandy, in New York. Sandy destroyed the old center, but a social media outpouring helped raise money for a new, bigger center. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
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NEW YORK (AP) — It took only hours for Superstorm Sandy's surging waters to destroy an emergency drop-in center for homeless gay youths in New York City.

But almost as quickly, a social media outpouring helped raise money for a new, bigger Ali Forney (FOR'-nay) Center to keep helping dozens of young people a day with medical care, counseling and a safe place to sleep.

A blogger posted the bad news about the Manhattan center and it went viral on Twitter. Donations of more than $250,000 — and counting — have come in to rebuild the center.

The facility was founded a decade ago as a last-ditch refuge for homeless lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youths.

The City Council says LGBT youth represent about half of New York's nearly 4,000 homeless young people.

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