The Quesnel Pride Society is conducting a Community Needs Assessment for the local LGBTQ+ community.
Society President Alison Prentice says the idea behind the survey is to find out definitively what the community wants…
“Because there hasn’t been any formal survey, or I don’t think even an informal survey done in the past, we really can’t say for certain this is what the community wants. We can say this is what we think they want, but until we hear from members of the community themselves, we can’t validate that premise. So that’s why it’s so important that we get as many people in the community as possible responding to this survey, so that their voices are heard.”
Prentice says there is going to be opportunity on the survey for adding things that they may not have thought of.
“And all of these answers are going to help drive the program development down the road for the Society, and really help us target the grant finding that we’re going to be doing to deliver the programs.”
Prentice says they do have some ideas already, including subsidized counselling for LGBTQ+ youth in Quesnel.
“Counselling is a challenge because of the cost. We have members, youth members in particular, not get counselling because it’s too costly for them. So our survey is going to try and find out if that really is an issue for the community, and if it is and has been identified as an issue, is there something that we can do about it in terms of program development.”
Another potential idea is binder exchange programs for trans members of the community.
Support groups is another possibility.
“Hearing stories from LGBTQ+ community members, like a speaker series, might be another one where people can get some feedback from members of the community who have become successful who have gone through what they did when they were younger, and know that there is something on the other side of getting through all of that.”
Prentice says it can also be difficult to meet others in the community.
“For example if you’re down in the City (Vancouver) you have a lot of gay cafes, you have gay bars, a lot of places that you can go that are sort of LGBTQ+ friendly. There’s a lot more places to meet people in a larger area than it is in a rural remote area like Quesnel. We don’t have any LGBTQ+ specific cafes or bars where people might meet.”
She says possible ideas might be to hold informal coffee klatches, or even dances.
Prentice says the survey will launch on January 24th and run through until February 6th.
She also encourages LGBTQ+ moms and dads to take the survey.
It can be found at pridesurvey.ca
“You can do it anonymously if you want, but if you do leave your name and contact info at the end of the survey where there is going to be an option to do that, then you’ll be entered into prize draws that we have as a reward for finishing the survey.”
Prentice says the survey was possible because of a microgrant from Fierte Canada Pride.