Grant provides social, legal and income support for trans and gender diverse populations
A total of $20,250 was granted to fill a service gap for trans and gender diverse individuals in Central Alberta
Trans and gender diverse (TDG) populations are highly under-served, with extremely limited available resources existing the province. When they do exist, resources often come with extensive wait times or significant accessibility barriers.
Community Connections, a program offered by Skipping Stone Scholarship Foundation, will be providing a host of different supports and services aimed at connecting trans and gender diverse Albertans meaningful opportunities for social connection, legal transition support, as well as food, income, and housing security.
“Community Connections offers an opportunity to connect and empower trans and gender diverse individuals so that they have the confidence, competence, and capabilities to not only survive but also to thrive,” Johnathan Kuipers, Director of Mental Health at Skipping Stone said. “We see this work as an investment in the future of gender equality, as we aim to illuminate the lived experiences of those who fall outside of traditional ideas relating to gender.”
Individuals accessing services through the program are connected with social workers, peer supports within internal community groups, and external supports that are vetted to ensure they are gender affirming. Legal transition supports assist with making identification amendments – including name and gender marker changes.
According to Kuipers, support with income, food and housing security are achieved through meetings with staff, who then link clients to the necessities which may include (but are not limited to) food bank referrals, resume and job inquiry support and/or referrals, finding and/or referring individuals to affordable housing options.
“The opportunity to be funded through this initiative is a very affirming experience for Skipping Stone,” Kuipers said. “We work tirelessly to illuminate the need for gender equity in our province and, further to this, we aim to widen the bandwidth of social understandings of gender and gender diversity. This opportunity means that we are at the table, working with other amazing agencies to promote the important cross-sector work to promote gender equity through an intersectional lens.”