It has been such a pleasure being able to connect with so many incredible young people this year! The speqtrum community is full of youth who continuously blow us away with their ability to seek support, advocate, form relationships, and build community with each other. We feel so privileged to hear their stories and to work alongside our community.
Since March, we've welcomed 79+ new youth to speqtrum through check-ins, peer support, and events. In accordance with COVID-19 health guidelines, we immediately pivoted our programming in March to an online format. This meant we had to get creative in finding ways to connect with our community and so check-ins, peer support, and online events were born!
Check-ins and peer support have both given us the incredible opportunity to connect one-on-one with the youth in our community and chat with them. Peer support has become a weekly or biweekly event where 2S-LGBTQIA+ youth can send us direct messages and chat with one of our speqtrum staff. Check-ins have become a weekly program where we reach out directly to a youth who has signed up for the program. The check-in program has filled such an important need and has been so popular that the program is currently full.
Since April, we've provided 656 check-ins, 138 peer support sessions, 44 events, and 65 referrals. We've hosted a wide range of online events this year, including many games nights and craft nights, nail painting, a roommate mixer, community care sessions, and our monthly 2S-LGBTQIA+ Intergenerational Kitchen in collaboration with Compass Community Health!
Another thing we've been able to provide is referrals to 2S-LGBTQIA+ youth. These have all been crucial referrals and include things like grocery or meal deliveries, laptop refurbishing and donating, affirming mental health support referrals, name change fundraising, connecting youth with community care groups, and gift card deliveries.
Altogether, we've had over 1101 supportive interactions with 2S-LGBTQIA+ youth! Wow, that's a lot of supportive interactions!
Again, we feel so privileged and honoured to be able to connect with youth and provide support. The speqtrum community is so incredibly special to us.
We have some exciting plans for the new year and can't wait to share them! See you in 2021!