Food for Thought: Supporting LGBTQ+ Communities

The following notes share thoughts and insights from the initial FoodSpark Potluck regarding LGBTQ+ resources and support. This convening included 34 community members who self-identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, queer, trans, gender-nonconforming, or non-binary.


IN COMMUNITY, SUPPORT LOOKS/FEELS LIKE:

  •  Acknowledging and respecting the fullness and who we are in our identities. Example: Seeing gender neutral/ all gender restrooms
  • Not being treated in a way that reminds us of only our differences.
    Example: We don’t like for people to constantly tell us how “brave” we are.
  • Being acknowledged as a full person and not just “queerness made flesh.”
  • Having community—a group of people where you can share life and not be concerned with categorizing everyone or not being accepted and understood.
  • Not getting ridiculed and judged if we don’t fit a stereotype of queerness.
    Example: Not being judged for identifying as bisexual or pansexual.


WHAT/WHERE IS THE CRITICAL MASS OF SUPPORT IN OUR COMMUNITY?

  • LGBTQ+ communities can be made up of any number of people and exist in many forms. It’s more about the support systems—who you have to support you in your life.
  • Most people find community through local bars and events.
  • Others found community through protests.
     

WHAT’S MISSING? WHAT’S NEEDED?

  • There aren’t many organizations devoted to helping people thrive in community that are recovering from addiction.
  • There is not sufficient education or curriculum being given to queer youth about substance abuse prevention.
  • There are not many spaces and experiences dedicated to LGBTQ+ people of color, so it is harder to find community.
  • We would like more spaces where people who ID as LGBTQ+ can go that are not bars. Examples: Queer yoga, tabletop Dungeons & Dragon, stand up comedy and improv, karaoke
  • Looking for more bi specific events
  • Looking for more spaces/events that are in nature