Supporting LBGTQ youth in Southern Oregon is our mission. It also is our passion . . . and it showed on Friday, May 20th at the Ashland Armory during the All Ages Alternative Prom! Youth and young adults (230+) from all over the Rogue Valley showed up!
Most schools in our rural area (except for Ashland High School) do not allow youth to buy same-sex tickets to their proms or allow them to attend as couples. Most are expected to dress in traditional binary outfits too, but obviously not the ones that we saw Friday night! The breadth of color, haircuts and outfits were a freeing site. One adult volunteer said, “Watching them connect and enjoy being ‘out’ made me tear-up. We never had that opportunity when I was young.”
The prom was a success, but we still have work to do. Please consider making a donation. If you attended prom and want to give back, now is your chance! No amount is too small in making Southern Oregon a safer place for LGBTQ youth and adults! Some of the money will go towards our new role of helping organize Southern Oregon’s PRIDE this October. Thank you for supporting LRP! (There is a donation button at the bottom of this page.)
Special Message from Linda Perry
Singer/Song Writer Linda Perry
More information to come on the auction that will take place on charitybuzz.com for the donated guitar.
Gratitude and Welcome
Thank you toRory Meza for their hard work facilitating SAGA until May of this year. The SAGA social group will now be on hiatus until January 2017. In the meantime, we will be hiring a therapist to start the SAGA support group in September 2016.
Mario Fregoso, LRP’s new Associate Director and Social Media Specialist
-Mario is a veteran of SAGA and Youth Empowerment Theater and has returned to LRP after getting his college education and the birth of his daughter, Addison.
New board members: Adrienne Kimmy, Aisha Young, Lynzee Robinson, and Shannon Webb
-Adrienne’s experience includes two years as a Youth Advisor in the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Las Vegas.
-Aisha Young grew up as a queer youth in the Rogue Valley. During college, she spent time working for the OSU Pride Center where she served as a student peer facilitator.
-Lynzee and Shannon were active members of this year’s Prom committee and both have experience in LBGTQ community work.
LRP 2016 Lavender Graduation
For the fifth year running, Lotus Rising Project, in collaboration with SOU Queer Resource Center, presented the annual Lavender Graduation Awards Ceremony. This ceremony offered an opportunity to recognize and honor the achievements of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, trans, gender queer, intersex, and allied graduating high school students.
In addition, this event was an opportunity to publicly recognize and thank all those who have contributed their time and energy to strengthening and enriching our community. Graduates received a certificate of achievement and a rainbow honor cord to sport with their cap and gown. Thank you all who attended, contributed, or participated in this momentous occasion!
Youth Empowerment Theatre
Thank you to all of you who attended the auditions for the Youth Empowerment Theater this past week. We brought on four new members: 2 from Butte Falls Charter School and 2 from Ashland High School. We’re still looking for more youth, and will be holding another audition in the fall. While June and July are vacation months for YET, we look forward to working with Planned Parenthood’s REV again starting in August.
On behalf of the cast of Youth Empowerment Theater, have a wonderful, creative, and safe summer! Don’t forget to watch for our next opportunity to audition again in October.
LRP’s 4th Step in the Transgender Initiative: Community Forum, Resources, & Group Information:
Community Forum: Bathroom Equity Discussion: Panel, Q&A, & Youth Support Circle
Monday, June 6 at 7-8:30 PM
Medford Library, Large Conference Room
An opportunity to hear from a panel of community leaders and youth about the transgender bathroom controversy. A Question and Answer time will follow the presentation. Youth will be offered a safe environment to discuss feelings about this subject.
Thank you to Oregon Health and Science University students, Kevin Kessler and Rebecca Deal, for choosing LRP’s Trans Initiative for their practicum this spring 2016. They researched and spoke to various health care providers in the Rogue Valley regarding their practices when serving transgender patients. They gave us the beginning of our new Trans Health Provider Resource list that will be added to our website very soon.
LRP had planned to host a community forum to share the students’ findings and to offer a panel revealing the healthcare disparities of the trans community. Due to some challenges, as well as a local protest in response to the announcement from the US Department of Justice addressing the rights of trans students to use restroom facilities, we were unable to host the forum at this time. We will, however, try to host it in the fall.
Trans Support Group
Ages 14 and over
Including those who identify as Binary & Gender Non-Conforming
Peer-led; Meets every other week in Medford.
We are working on a film! Lotus Rising Project received a grant from the Meyer Memorial Trust to create a video that “takes a look at the lives of LBGTQ youth and young adults growing up in Southern Oregon.”
Our Southern Oregon Gender-Sexuality Alliance Support Network (SOGSASN) Program Coordinator, Halo Howell, also has film production background and is leading this project. It will be ready for viewing later in the summer and early fall.
If you are interested in being involved with the planning process for this year’s Pride. We will be holding a Prom Committee meeting June 16th at 6pm. The meeting location has not been confirmed. If you are unable to attend this meeting, but would like to be involved we would like to hear from you. Please email [email protected] if you would like to attend.
Fundraising Event Rogue Community College’s Rainbow Club
Save the date: June 3rd, 2016! From 7pm to 9pm. Come play with Southern Oregon’s favorite drag queens at RCC’s first ever drag show. It’s a fundraising event for the Rainbow Club on the Medford RCC campus.
LRP is looking for a new volunteer coordinator in our Shaklee Non-Profit fundraising program. Benefits include a generous discount on your own personal Shaklee products and a flexible time commitment. If you are interested in finding out more about this opportunity, email [email protected]
If you are interested in purchasing Shaklee green household and nutritional products from our online store, please visit our store Click Here
This is a great way to support our organization with products you may already use in your day to day life!