Building the resiliency of LGBTQ youth and strengthening Gay Straight Alliance Clubs
The SFMC’s New Mexico Gay Straight Alliance Network (NMGSAN) is a youth-driven program to prevent bullying, suicide, and substance abuse for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning (LGBTQ) and straight allied youth.
The NMGSAN builds resiliency, positive identity development, self-efficacy, mental health and empowerment of LGBTQ youth through peer training, peer support, and leadership development.
Services provided by the NMGSAN fall into five main categories:
- Youth Events – We host 9 annual events (including overnight retreats) to build resiliency and leadership skills, including peer-led trainings on identity, social justice/oppression, healthy relationships, political and advocacy education, social networking and peer helping skills.
- GSA Club Support– We support school and community based GSAs and to build the capacity of youth leaders to create safer environments in schools and make positive social change and provide a variety of resources. With NMGSAN’s support, GSA clubs in New Mexico have grown from 12 in 2005 to 60 in 2013.
- Education and Awareness Campaigns– We implement and promote participation in national campaigns to raise awareness and educate school communities to reduce the stigma associated with identifying as LGBTQ and to create safer school climates.
- Adult Trainings – We offer educational trainings for providers, school staff, counselors, and community members in schools, community organizations, and at local and national conferences on supporting LGBTQ youth. We also assist in the creation and ongoing development of Safe Zones programs.
- Networking – We provide opportunities for LGBTQ youth to connect with other LGBTQ youth through social media networking such as Facebook, Twitter, and the NMGSAN website.
For more information about NM GSA Network, please contact:
NM GSA Network Program Coordinator
Call: (505) 983-6158 x30
Jenn Jevertson, MS
NM GSA Network Program Manager
Call: (505) 983-6158 x 13