Pilot Projects 2020-2021

Edmonton Pilot Capstone Project

The 2SLGBTQ+ Intergenerational Mentorship Program was a 6-week pilot project that was created in response to the unique challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic to 2SLGBTQ+ community members. This pilot project aimed to facilitate intergenerational connections, transfer of knowledge and resources between mentors and mentees, while providing a safe, inclusive and affirming environment that reinforced cultural identity, and fostered a sense of belonging. This program was for 2SLGBTQ+ adults and young adults (18-29 yrs) in Alberta who would benefit from sharing knowledge and experience with another community member in a mentor-mentee connection. The program received significant community interest from the community with almost three times as many applicants as the program could accommodate in this community pilot project.

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Vancouver Pilot Capstone Project

Following a four-day retreat in Abbotsford to explore the intersections of the Do You Mind? cohort’s queer and trans identities with the issues of mental health and HIV, participants identified the lack of effective strategies of support when it came to sharing experiences of suicidal ideation with service providers, friends, and/or family. Hence, for the community pilot capstone project, the cohort gathered with other queer and trans youth leaders from across the Fraser Valley and created an online resource guide that identified some of the best practices that service providers, youth’s friends and families can utlize when it came to learning about their experiences of suicidal ideation. The Online Resource Guide on Effective Responses to Youth Mental Health Challenges is available on YouthCO’s website.

Halifax Pilot Capstone Project

Small Wins, Queer Victories was a creative writing workshop that celebrated all types of success in the queer community. This intervention explored how even the smallest win can produce meaningful change both for personal and community well-being. With a focus on creating zines (small, independent publications), this workshop explored the use of art-based approaches (e.g., creative writing) to address key mental health themes. Some key themes that arose through youth’s works include: Queer Mentorship, Coping Strategies, Coming-out Stories (including challenges that one may have had to overcome), How to build relationships (friendships/dating tips), Indigenous Treaty Rights/Resources, and Allyship: Things to remember for non-bipoc folks.

To learn more about these interventions, check out our previous webinar, Do You Mind? Community-led Responses to 2SLGBTQ+ Youth Mental Health.