July 13, 2007

Featured Organization: The Naming Project

Ross from the website In Lay Terms gave me a heads up about a wonderful organization he works with in the Minneapolis area called The Naming Project. The following is from their website:

The Naming Project is a faith-based youth group serving youth of all sexual and gender identities. The primary focus is to provide a place for youth who are gay/lesbian/bisexual/ transgender/ queer/questioning to learn, grow, and share their experiences. In this way The Naming Project is a space in which youth can comfortably discuss faith and who they understand themselves to be--whether gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender...or straight.

The Naming Project is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It is a mission and outreach of Bethany Lutheran Church in the Seward neighborhood. However, The Naming Project reaches out to youth across the United States through its programs.

Programs of The Naming Project Include:
* Local meetings on Sunday evenings in Minneapolis
* Outings to Worship and Fellowship Experiences
* E-mail check-ins and resources for youth and parents
* Workshops and conversations for youth in schools, communities, and churches
* Workshops for youth workers, parents, and congregations
* A five-day summer camp for youth

There is also a film about the camp titled Camp Out that will premier on the LOGO network on Saturday, July 28th.

I think this kind of work is so very important. One of the biggest issues I've run across in the GLBT community is the difficulty people have in unlearning who they thought they were supposed to be and coming to understand who they really are. Groups like this can help avoid much of that pain by encouraging youth to accept who they are at an earlier age and learn to love themselves and others.

If you know of an organization that is working for the benefit of the GLBT community, please let me know at straight_notnarrow@yahoo.com and I'll be happy to feature them here.

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