April 15, 2010

LGBT Helping Hands 4/15/10-District 202 (St. Paul, MN)

n 1991, a group of concerned adults and youth gathered around a kitchen table to discuss a concern.  There were no safe and supportive, sober and drug-free places—or safe spaces—for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth. Through a unique youth/adult partnership, District 202 opened its doors less than a year later.
Then something remarkable happened in this newly created “safe space.” LGBT youth created a new community of their own design, without the daily isolation or pressures of those times. And with it, these youth found their voices, built their self-confidence and mentored their peers. They became empowered.

Now 18 years later, this pioneering “safe space,” which gave birth to six LGBT youth-serving organizations and became a model for many more, is evolving. District 202’s mission has not changed, but how it delivers on that mission has changed. This change is the culmination of three years research, a community roundtable/assessment, youth surveys, and discussions with current and potential funders.

District 202 continues to empower LGBT youth through a unique blend of programs, face-to-face interaction throughout the Twin Cities and online engagement through our secure social networking site. Creating safe spaces online and throughout the Twin Cities is the most efficient and effective use of our and our community’s resources.

Click here to find out more.

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