Posted September 23, 2015 by Cooper Point Journal in Community
 
 

Queer Resources



(image used with permission of Stonewall Youth from their facebook page)

 

By Nix

QUEER RESOURCES AVAILABLE TO YOU AT EVERGREEN AND IN OLYMPIA

 

Looking for a safe space? Or just ways to be involved with your community?  At Evergreen and in Olympia there are resources available for queer students looking for support, community, or opportunities for involvement.

 

On Evergreen’s campus there is Transgender Resources and Education X-travaganza! (T*REX), a student group that holds events for queer and trans students. Such as Safe Swim, an event at the Campus Recreation Center pool where queer and trans students are provided with a safer space to swim after hours. T*REX also has a resource file on their private facebook page that is available to those who like their page.

 

Their mission statement is to “provide resources, outreach, education, support, and advocacy for transgender and non-gender conforming students and allies.” This statement as well as the groups contact information can be found on Evergreens website along with all other student groups on campus.

 

Queer and Trans People of Color (QTPOC) is a group on campus that hosts events and serves the needs of queer and trans people of color in the Evergreen community. They work to create a space for students who align with the QTPOC identity to come together and build community as well as create visibility.

 

The Evergreen Queer Alliance holds regular weekly meetings on campus, the Queer Alliance  works to create a space where queer-identified greeners can serve the needs of the queer community at Evergreen by providing a safe space, resources, advocacy, awareness, education, entertainment, and community.  

 

The Evergreen Bike Shop hosts Lady and Trans night on tuesdays from 4-7, it provides a safer space for women, trans, and gender-nonconforming students to work on their bikes or connect with others in an accepting space.

 

“I feel very supported by the amazingly active queer community here in Olympia. It’s really wonderful to be involved with so many people that come to Lady and Trans Night, we are all coming from different backgrounds but we are all looking for the same thing, people that care about us and want to be our friends, and the two organizations I work with are centered entirely around that.” says Olivia Smith, a volunteer at Lady and Trans night , on Olympia’s queer community.

 

Outside of Evergreen’s campus is Stonewall Youth, a drop-in center for queer youth in downtown Olympia. It is volunteer-run and youth-led organization that offers a myriad of programs for youth, volunteers, and community members to be involved in. It was founded in 1991 by Evergreen students as part of an internship.

 

I think one of the most important things that I would want people to know about Stonewall is that it is a place to empower one another. Not just the youth to each other but everyone that is involved enhances their lives in some way,” says Masa Kawamura, a volunteer at Stonewall and Evergreen graduate.

 

The organization recently began a program called Queer Youth Identity Exploration Tribute (Q.Y.I.E.T), an eight week process where queer and trans youth and community members share their stories, memoirs, truths, and artwork in a performance. It’s an adaptation of the Queer Experience, which happens at Evergreen annually during spring quarter.

 

“The use of an acronym that sounds like quiet is used ironically in hopes that it highlights we will not be” said Kawamura. The workshops for Q.Y.I.E.T. are going on now at the Stonewall office, and LGBTQ+ youth of age can come on fridays at 5 and join up until the performance which will be November 21st tentatively.

 

Kawamura is also creating a discussion and support group for queer and trans identified people of color of any ages that is open to the community, called Trans and Queer People of Color Connect. The first group will be Tues. October 20th from 4-6pm in the Co-Lab 317 4th Ave in downtown olympia.

 

Stonewall is currently hiring young queer voices to be a part of Speakers Bureau, a program made up of youth ages 21 and under who identify as LGBTQ+. Speakers Bureau organizes the Stonewall Saturday Activism School (SASS), and provides anti-oppression workshops on an array of topics for schools, community organizations, agencies, and public events. You can call (360) 705-2738 or email Stonewall at speakersbureau@stonewallyouth.org if you’re interested in applying.

 

Stonewall also regularly hosts drop-ins on Wednesdays from 3-5 and Fridays from 4-8, and youth support groups on Wednesdays from 5-7 in the Stonewall office. Their organization is also always open to interns and volunteers to help hold space for youth drop-ins and lead activities. Other events that are open to community volunteers include dances and fundraisers.