(The Magazine Plus Editorial): – Minneapolis, Minnesota, June 4, 2021 (Issuewire.com) – Newly formed QUEERSPACE collective proudly announces the launch of its exciting new initiative, QUEERSPACE Hangouts, an intergenerational mentoring program creating a safe and inclusive space to support LGBTQ + youth. The 2021 pilot program represents the organization’s first step in realizing its vision for all LGBTQ + youth to have a supportive community to help them develop a strong sense of pride in who they are, where they are from and where. they want to go.
In the United States, LGBTQ + youth represent some of the most vulnerable and underserved people in our country. Almost 85% of LGBTQ + youth experience bullying in their school and they are five times more likely to attempt suicide than their non-LGBTQ + peers. Additionally, LGBTQ + youth are at greater risk of being homeless, making up about 40% of the homeless youth population.
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Studies show that supporting an adult in the life of an LGBTQ + youth can reduce the risk of suicide by 40%. Many LGBTQ + youth feel isolated and, for a variety of reasons, the support they need may not be available. In such a landscape, it is more than ever necessary to have caring adults, advocates and mentors. Mentoring, a proven model for improving outcomes for at-risk youth, can be an effective way to fill this gap.
“As a youngster, I was fortunate to be surrounded by many LGBTQ + adults, which provided me with an incredible support base when I came out in my early twenties. When I started researching resources available today for LGBTQ + youth, I was surprised to find that out of 5,000 youth mentorship programs across our country, less than 1% offer a formal program for LGBTQ + youth. LGBTQ + youth, ”said Nicki Hangsleben, Founder and Executive Director of Collectif QUEERSPACE. “When we saw the statistics on the challenges facing young people in our community and the limited resources, we knew that not only was this a question of justice, but that we had a responsibility to respond to it.
QUEERSPACE collective’s new intergenerational youth-centric mentoring program, QUEERSPACE Hangouts, will connect LGBTQ + youth with LGBTQ + adults for one-on-one mentorship. Youth and mentors will meet weekly to build a relationship, set and achieve goals, and have fun. QUEERSPACE’s monthly mentoring events will provide mentors and mentees with a broader sense of community and feelings of inclusion and pride.
“Our programs will support young people from diverse social, economic and racial backgrounds, and we are particularly committed to helping young people of color who also identify as LGBTQ +,” Hangsleben continued. “LGBTQ + youth of color find themselves at the intersection of many identities and face additional challenges that we want to support through QUEERSPACE hangouts. ”
the QUEERSPACE Hangouts The pilot program will leverage local partnerships to reach youth in the Twin Cities with an expansion into Greater Minnesota in 2022. The QUEERSPACE Collective is seeking volunteer mentors as well as donations to support its programs. To learn more about program requirements, including training and background checks, visit queerspacecollective.org.
ABOUT THE QUEERSPACE COLLECTIVE
QUEERSPACE collective is a non-profit organization committed to creating a space for LGBTQ + youth to feel safe and empowered to be themselves. The QUEERSPACE collective provides mentorship and resources to help guide and empower LGBTQ + youth on their journey to adulthood. queerspacecollective.org
The executive director of QUEERSPACE collective, Nicki Hangsleben, is available for interviews on all aspects of the organization and the LGBTQ + youth community it serves.
Executive Director and Founder