Saying Goodbye to the DC Center for the LGBT Community

David Mariner

Dear Friends

In 1999, the Cherry Fund and Whitman Walker Clinic formed an Ad Hoc Committee to create an LGBT Community Center in the District. That vision became a reality when theDC Center for the LGBT Community was incorporated in 2004 with signatories Patrick Menasco, Jeff Englar, Larry Stansbury, and Ed Craft.

As we celebrate our 15th Anniversary this year, I hope we all take time to celebrate the many visionary board members, staff, volunteers, and community partners who have brought us to this point, including our past board chairs Michael Sessa and Michael Fowler, and our current board co-chairs Rehana Mohammed and Jonathan Gilad.

2019 also marks my 11th and final year at the DC Center.   September 30th will be my last day serving as Executive Director of this remarkable organization.  While I look forward to the opportunities in my future, the DC Center will always hold a very special place in my heart.

I will spend my remaining time here assuring a smooth and strategic transition.   2020 will be a year of growth for the DC Center with a significant increase in grant funding. This includes a groundbreaking grant from DC Department of Aging and Community Living (DACL).   This grant, which will help us better serve older LGBTQ adults, is the first grant ever given by DACL to an LGBT organization.

I am grateful to be able to leave the DC Center in the hands of very capable board members and staff,   It is the right time to make way for new leadership, ideas, and vision.   I look forward to seeing where we go from here.

Please make plans to join me at the DC Center Fall Reception on Friday September 13th at the Warner Building celebrate our 15th Anniversary.   Purchase your tickets now at: thedccenter.org/events/fifteen

Best Regards,

David Mariner

2019 Youth Count

Youth Count

Every year, The Community Partnership for the Prevention of Homelessness (TCP) together with the DC Department of Human Services (DHS) and the Youth Subcommittee of the DC Interagency Council on Homelessness (DCICH) plans and conducts the Homeless Youth Census (HYC) – or “Youth Count DC” – in an effort to better understand the scope and scale of homelessness and housing instability among youth living in the District. The 2019 Youth Count DC will take place from September 20th to September 28th, 2019. The information collected in this nine-day survey event creates an annual “snapshot” of the number of youth experiencing homelessness or housing instability that aids District policy-makers and funders in making smarter, data-driven decisions about resource allocation and helps us track progress toward the District’s strategic plan to end youth homelessness.  One important piece of this is understanding how many youth experiencing homelessness are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender.

The DC Center will once again be participating in the survey.  Youth experiencing homelessness that are visiting the center between September 20th and September 28th will be invited to complete a survey and receive a (TBD) incentive.

Important Information about Youth Count DC:

  • As the name suggests, Youth Count DC will focus solely on unaccompanied individuals and heads of family households who are age 24 and under;
  • In addition to “literally homeless” youth – youth who are experiencing homelessness while in shelter, transitional housing or living on the street – it also includes young people who are living in unstable housing arrangements (e.g. in doubled-up situations or “couch surfing”);
  • It is conducted through partnering organizations that administer surveys with youth who are encountered: 1) in emergency shelters and transitional housing programs; 2) on-site at places that youth frequent (including meal programs, after-school programs, drop-in centers, etc.); and 3) with street-based homeless outreach teams.

What you need to know to prepare:

If f you have never participated and want to learn more, please do not hesitate to contact me [Elisabeth Young] at EYoung@community-partnership.org.

More information will be shared here as it becomes available.

 

Employment Opportunities at Whitman Walker Health

Whitman Walker Health

Whitman Walker is currently hiring for two Public Benefits and insurance navigator positions.  Navigators help WWH patients and DC residents with health insurance eligibility, enrollment, and literacy – connecting people to Medicaid, Medicare, Qualified Health Plans on the exchange, subsidies, and other insurance opportunities. Navigators become trained experts in both technical content and client counseling and navigation skills. While the navigators will be trained and supervised by the Legal Services program, they are part of a specialized Insurance Navigation Team that, since 2007, has worked closely with reception and billing staff as well as medical, behavioral, and dental staff to ensure health insurance coverage for our patients. Navigators have been on the front lines of implementation of health reform as certified DC Health Link Assisters and providing critical consumer outreach and enrollment assistance to uninsured and under-insured DC residents.

For more information, follow these links below

About Whitman-Walker Health

Whitman-Walker envisions a society where all persons are seen for who they are, treated with dignity and respect, and afforded equal opportunity to health and wellbeing. Through care, advocacy, research, and education, we empower all persons to live healthy, love openly, and achieve equality and inclusion. For over 40 years, we have been meeting the needs of our communities with the endless dedication of our diverse teams.

 

DesiQ Diaspora Call For Proposals

Desi Queer Diaspora

NQAPIA is currently accepting proposals for Desi Queer Diaspora (DQD) 2020, to be held in Austin, Texas from May 15-17, 2020. Proposals will be accepted from August 12, 2019 until December 1st, 2019 at 11:59pm EST. Late proposals may be considered at the discretion of the DQD planning committee.

The term proposals references everything from discussion circles, movie showings, workshops, presentations, classes, panels  and much more. Proposals may address a wide variety of topics, and we welcome proposals from anyone who identifies as queer and/or tgnc and traces their family ancestry to South Asia and the diaspora. As you develop your proposal, please keep in mind that sessions will be 90 minutes.

Proposals will be reviewed by a team of DQD steering committee members and members of the conference proposal review committee. As we review proposals, we are committed to developing a conference schedule that covers a wide variety of interest to the community, as reflected in our community survey as well as session presenters that are representative of our community across class, caste, country of origin, religion, gender identity, gender expression, sex characteristics, and sexual orientation. NQAPIA also plan to organize specific panels to represent and reflect on the diversity of our community.

NQAPIA will let you know whether your proposal was accepted (or not) by February 1st, 2020. We will be accepting 27 workshops total. We ask that you accept the offer to present at the conference by February 15th, 2020. If you present at the conference, we will offer free registration. Note that for each session, there is a maximum of two presenters. If your proposal is not initially accepted, you may be placed on a waitlist and eventually be asked to present if other presenters drop out.

Find out more at: desiqdiaspora.org

LGBTQ Community Centers #PutPatientsFirst

LGBT Community Center Report

August 14th marks the end of the comment period on the new rules proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that will jeopardize the health and well-being of vulnerable populations such as the LGBTQ community. The proposed regulation focuses on Section 1557 of the Health Care Rights Law, a part of the Affordable Care Act that bans gender discrimination. The proposal would erase all reference to protections against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, sex stereotyping, and gender identity.

CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers strongly opposes the newly proposed regulation, and, working with a coalition of national, state and local organizations, has generated over 132,400 comments to HHS in opposition to the new rules.
“LGBTQ community centers provide services and referral resources daily to thousands of individuals across our country,” said Lora L. Tucker, CEO of CenterLink. “Centers and their constituents have loudly spoken out against the new HHS rules. The rules promote discrimination and will harm many in our community who need access to basic care.”

Proposing a rule that would gut the Health Care Rights Law is the latest of many attempts the Trump-Pence Administration has made to undermine and threaten access to healthcare to those who need it most.

A patient’s health should always come first. CenterLink and the 250+ LGBTQ community centers who belong to our network will continue to advocate for patients who are medically underserved and help to ensure that the LGBTQ community has access to health care that is free from discrimination or bias.

Binder Donation Project

The DC Center is excited to announce a new partnership with GC2B Transitional Apparel! GC2B has reached out to many organizations in the DC area and provided free binders for them to give away, and the DC Center is fortunate enough to be one of them. 

Everyone and anyone is welcome to come by the DC Center at any point during regular office hours (12-6 pm Monday through Friday and 11-3PM on Saturday) and get fitted for a free binder! 

Sizes range from XS to 5X. 

We have received 90 binders from GC2B! As we learn what sizes and styles are most in need in our community, we will be adjusting what we request in our recurring shipments from GC2B. This means that at the beginning of the program we have limited numbers. If your size is unfortunately not available, we will add you to a waitlist and get you what you need as soon as possible! 

This is a no-gatekeeping event. Whoever you are, whatever you look like, whatever you need your binder for, come by the DC Center and pick up what you need for FREE! 

Questions? Call the DC Center at 202-682-2245

Job Opening at the DC Center: Social Worker/Therapist- Position Filled

Job Opportunities at the DC Center for the LGBT Community

***This position has been filled***

The DC Center for the LGBT Community is hiring! We are looking for a full-time social worker/therapist. See below for details.

Social Worker/Therapist Position:

The DC Center for the LGBT Community has a mission of educating, empowering, celebrating, and connecting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community of Washington, DC. The Social Worker/Therapist helps to achieve this mission by providing mental health support services to survivors of violence, crime, and trauma. These services are available free-of-charge to our community members due to grant funding from the Office of Victim Services and Justice Grants (OVSJG). The Social Worker/Therapist will see clients individually and in group settings, as well as in a couples/collateral therapy capacity, if requested. The person who fills this position is also responsible for other related projects, such as quarterly reporting and management of the OVSJG grant, outreach and education in the LGBTQ community, and assisting the mission, vision, and values of The DC Anti-Violence Project (DC AVP). The Social Worker/ Therapist will report to the Executive Director. 

Special Skills:

The Social Worker/Therapist must have the appropriate licensure to practice in DC (LGSW or LICSW) and have at least 2 years’ experience working as a clinician with a diverse client population. They must also have a demonstrated ability to work with LGBTQ+ adults, to work well in a team, to problem solve and communicate at all levels verbally as well as in writing. Must be self-motivated and be able to build and maintain relationships, both with colleagues and with key stakeholders in the larger victim-serving network of Washington, DC. The ideal candidate will have prior nonprofit/grant management experience and is well adept at multitasking in a fast-paced environment. Bilingual capabilities are strongly preferred, but not required. Please note that this position does not have on-site supervision hours, so should candidate want to pursue clinical supervision, they must do so off-site with financial support from DC Center. 

Functions and Duties

Social Worker/Therapist: Responsibilities:

  • Provide individual, couples, and group mental health support services to a caseload of 25-35 unique clients
  • Conduct intake assessments with all new potential clients to assess safety, job status, financial resources, living arrangements, current support system, type and history of victimization, legal issues, related medical history, and clinical symptomatology for the past 30 days.
  • Provide clients with LGBTQ-friendly and affirming referrals to community-based services, aimed at assisting individuals affected by crime, violence and trauma
  • Assess clients and provide necessary intervention in crisis situations (safety plans, hospitalization, referrals, etc.)
  • Keep current and accurate records of all clinical interactions in our clinical database system
  • Collaborate with DC Center staff to provide community-based education and outreach opportunities in line with OVSJG grant requirements 
  • Write quarterly reports and manage grant deliverables for the OVSJG grant throughout the fiscal year
  • Deliver trauma-informed, culturally competent assessment and treatment techniques to all survivors seeking support services, and serve as a resource for all individuals seeking support through The DC Center
  • Work in partnership with The DC Anti-Violence Project members to further the mission, vision, and values of DC AVP
  • Work well with a diverse staff to facilitate an open, supportive and warm environment for all individuals who visit The DC Center

Please send qualified resumes to  justin@thedccenter.org before Monday, August 19th. Salary Range is expected to fall within $52,500 – $55,00. 

 

Meet the Staff: Taryn

Meet one of our Support Desk Volunteers, Taryn Kitchen! If you call or stop by the Center on a Monday, you’ll likely see them welcoming visitors and getting folks oriented to the DC Center’s programs. Taryn also keeps the website updated and coordinates some of the Center’s volunteer opportunities.

Birthdate, Astro Sign

July 24, which makes me a Leo

Where are you originally from?

I’m from a small town Massachusetts, known for its one traffic light installed in the 90s.

Why did you start working at the DC Center?

I have appreciated the many programs and resources at the DC Center since I moved here and have met many of my friends through the Center. I was excited to get more involved and have a chance to connect more with the LGBT community in DC.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

I really love talking to folks who are just starting to connect with queer communities and maybe visiting the Center for the first time.

What is your music anthem?

Oh man, this is tough… I’ve watched Tash Sultana’s Tiny Desk Concert approx 7382 times, so I think I’m gonna go with that…

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?

The instant family you find everywhere. Whether its a DC Center support group, a queer movie night, or an Andrea Gibson show, you know where you can find people to instantly connect with.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?

I love QT Fusion’s dance nights. The queer bachata nights are great to meet tons of people and fulfill my dance soul. 

What is your favorite queer movie?

Hmm I’m gonna go with Princess Cyd, for its quality queer coming of age narrative. Also, I know you didn’t ask, but I’m gonna plug my favorite queer book– Dante and Aristotle Discover the Secrets of the Universe– cause I’m a sucker for YA and it’s beautiful.

What clothing item is a staple in your wardrobe?

Funky patterned button-ups, particularly with birds and florals.

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?

I’d love to see it painted as a community mural by local students.

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

All the young trans and queer kids out there being proud and making change in their schools and communities