In the wake of a the suicide of Billy Lucas, sex columnist Dan Savage has created a YouTube-based project called It Gets Better. The project encourages anyone who wants to record a video of encouragement for gay young people so that they know that as shitty as their lives might be, things will eventually get better.

If you’re gay or lesbian or bi or trans and you’ve ever read about a kid like Billy Lucas and thought, “Fuck, I wish I could’ve told him that it gets better,” this is your chance. We can’t help Billy, but there are lots of other Billys out there—other despairing LGBT kids who are being bullied and harassed, kids who don’t think they have a future—and we can help them.

This is the most intensely bittersweet movement I have seen in a long time. It’s unutterably sad that some kids are still subjected to horrific baiting so intense that it drives them to suicide – and that it’s often unofficially sanctioned by their communities. It’s also beautiful that there are people with the perspective and means to deliver messages of hope. In the words of Harvey Milk (which Savage also quotes), “You gotta give ’em hope.”