- Unitarian Universalism Connection
We made it! Thank you!
We added a stretch goal in support of the Syracuse Q Center.
This stretch goal will support the Q Center in Syracuse which provides a safe place for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth and their families and allies to gather. The center offers HIV, STD, and Hepatitis C testing; provides after school drop in programs, leadership and advocacy training, and special events. Case Management services are available for LGBTQ youth who need assistance with housing, advocacy, medical care, mental health services, and other special needs.
Funding above our original goal will go to helping formerly homeless trans youth get needed items for their new apartment.
Celebrated transgender trailblazer Kate Bornstein has–with humor and spunk–ushered us into a world of limitless possibility through a daring re-envisionment of the gender system as we know it. Kate lives on the edge of paradox: she is not a man, and not a woman. She looks beyond the binary to see gender as both a conscious practice, and a playful journey. And we are lucky enough to be welcoming Kate as our keynote speaker. If you have ever heard her speak (and if you haven’t you should!) you know that this will be special! In addition to Kate we will be offering many workshops. Some of them are intended for folks who want to be good allies but don’t know much about gender-nonconforming issues. Workshops such as trans 101, and a panel of gender non-conforming folk. Some of the workshops are designed especially for folks who live beyond the binary; workshops such as trans inclusive medicine, trans parenting, DASA (Dignity for All Students Act). Some are focused on the future – a De-escalation workshop and a workshop entitled “What Now Where Do We Go From Here.”
As a congregation it is our hope that this one day conference will be both a place where Trans and gender non-conforming folk can gather, connect and learn and where cisgender folk can learn about being better allies. We are also hoping that by hosting this conference we will make a BOLD statement to our larger community that we are a safe and welcoming community because we really do want to build beloved community beyond the binary.
If you would like to register for this event along with donating click here.
Mr. Barb Greve, co-founder of TRUUsT (Transgender Religious professional Unitarian Universalists Together)
Our world needs more places where gender non-conformers and cis-gender folks can gather to learn together, build connections, and share resources. With Kate Bornstein as the keynote speaker, this conference promises to be a fun-filled, information-packed experience. Kudos to the First UU Society of Syracuse for dreaming this up, opening their building, and inviting folks in!
Wendy Reine Fitzgerald – staff member ACR Syracuse
“As a member of the prevention department and harm reduction unit a ACR Health in Syracuse, NY, I have had the pleasure of working with and alongside many LGBTQ and transgender individuals. There is a large gap in the education and treatment of individuals that do not fit into the ‘gender binary’ and it truly hurts my heart to see anyone suffer especially for lack of acceptance, knowledge and resources. I am genuinely proud to part of the work being done in and for this conference and the bridging the gap for our community.”
Paul Barfoot – member First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse
“I am a cisgender male. I have always been comfortable with being identified as male. There are quite a few people in my life for whom gender identity is not so easy. I care about these people very much. As I have become more aware of the struggles they face, I want to learn as much as I can about how to be an ally. I am so proud of my faith community for choosing to create this opportunity for increasing communication in a loving environment”
Tina Lesley-Fox– Lifespan Faith Development Director First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse
“Before I became a religious educator, I worked with LGBTQ homeless teens. Education and queer youth are two of my passions. Finding a church community that is committed to educating themselves about issues facing LGBTQ people is like a dream. I am proud to serve First UU Syracuse and proud of their decision to host this conference to make our congregation and city a more welcoming place for gender queer people.”
Claudia Klaver – member First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse
“I have had the opportunity to work with trans youth as through the UU teen programming, supervising many cons and serving as an adult member of our districts YAC for two years. I also have had trans students and colleagues and read and taught the work of transgender theorists in my work as a humanities professor at Syracuse University. These personal, pedagogical, and intellectual experiences have transformed my feminism, my understanding of gender identity, and my relationship to my own gender. However, I realize that most of the adults in our congregations and communities have not had the opportunities for these transformative experiences. I believe transgender activism and theory is crucial not just for the transgender community, but for feminism—for dismantling the powerful structures of patriarchy that depend up a hierarchical gender binary. Feminism and gay and lesbian rights alone will not accomplish the social transformations that we need. Something like parental leave for fathers as well as mothers is inextricably tied to challenging of the gender binary that transgender individuals have pioneered.”
The center offers HIV, STD, and Hepatitis C testing; provides after school drop in programs, leadership and advocacy training, special events. Case Management services are available for LGBTQ youth who need assistance with housing, advocacy, medical care, mental health services, and other special needs. Specifically this money will go to helping formerly homeless trans youth get needed items for their new apartment.