More women from sexual and gender minorities will have the tools and resources they need to take on leadership roles in the community and at work, thanks to a grant from Status of Women.
The altView Foundation for Gender Variant and Sexual Minorities is launching a series of four interactive micro-conferences today called “Breaking Down Walls” to connect lesbian, bisexual, trans, queer and two-spirit (LBTQ2S) women with resources that better support their empowerment.
“No one should be discriminated against based on their gender identity or sexual orientation. Diversity is our strength and we need to hear the voices of LGBTQ2S women in community leadership positions. This can only happen if they first feel safe and accepted. Gender equality leads to social and economic growth, so when we improve the lives of women and girls, we make life better for all Albertans.”
~Stephanie McLean, Minister of Status of Women
Participants will gather as peers to talk about poverty, homelessness, violence against women and girls, health and wellness, and leadership in their community.
“Our approach brings together groups of LBTQ2S women of all backgrounds and social circumstances to support one another through safe, honest conversation and skill development. With support like this, we hope to see more women take on leadership roles in community advocacy and the democratic process.”
~Stephanie Daly, president of the board, The altView Foundation for Gender Variant and Sexual Minorities
The $37,500 Status of Women grant has helped altView hire a project coordinator, offer child care and pay for supplies and resources to support the conferences and a followup advisory panel. The agency is collaborating with the Edmonton John Howard Society and the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services to deliver the conferences.
Each micro-conference will serve 15-30 participants in Edmonton and surrounding areas, and focus on individual outcomes. Onsite child care will be available.
Only 2.1 per cent of Canadian FP500 board members identify as LGBTQ2S. Having diverse voices at decision-making tables helps organizations make better decisions and improves their bottom lines.
About Status of Women grants
Status of Women’s first-ever grants program funds 33 innovative projects by not-for-profit and charitable organizations for a total of $1.5 million in the 2016-17 fiscal year.
Successful projects such as “Breaking Down Walls: LBTQ2S Women’s Empowerment,” work to end violence against women and girls and increase the number of women in leadership roles.
Other grants have funded:
- programs to help girls hone their leadership skills in Calgary
- leadership training for women in Grande Prairie