Urban Native Youth Association to hold gathering about safe spaces for queer youth

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      When Aimee Beauchamp of the Squamish Nation began her position three months ago as school support counsellor at the Urban Native Youth Association, she found many people asking her if she would run programs for two-spirit and queer indigenous youth.

      She told the Georgia Straight by phone that she wanted to find out more about what youth wanted and when she began to connect with contacts at various organizations, her inquiry evolved into the QTBIPOC Youth Gathering.

      This free, daylong event will address what queer youth seek in safe spaces.

      Qmunity, Trans Care BC, PeerNetBC, and several other organizations will be involved in what is part of a bigger project to create safe spaces for QTBIPOC (Queer Trans Black Indigenous and People of Colour) youth.

      The gathering will consist of a day of workshops for QTBIPOC for queer youth (25 years old and under) to share their thoughts, experiences, and knowledge about safe spaces for youth who identify as LGBT and an indigenous person or person of colour. Youth from across B.C. are welcome to attend. (Some funding will be available for youth from communities outside of Vancouver.)

      Workshops will include a storytelling session that will help youth learn how to tell their own stories. The queer cultural group Love Intersections will share and discuss their films. Some workshops will also be available for adults and non-QTBIPOC people who are helping to bring youth to the event.

      The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on January 30 at Britannia Secondary School (1001 Cotton Drive).

      For more information and to register (deadline is January 16), visit the event's webpage.