Saturday, August 28, 2010

We're Hiring a GLBTQQ Youth Program Coordinator!


August 2010

Program Description

The Living Room is an emerging youth service agency in Clackamas County run by an all-volunteer Board of Directors with guidance from a Youth Advisory Council. Our vision is: “To provide a safe, healthy, empowering space where GLBTQQ (gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning) youth (ages 14-20) and their allies can connect with one another and resources in our community.” We operate as a youth-adult partnership model in collaboration with service providers, faith groups, and schools. We have non-profit status under OSSCC (The Oregon Safe Schools and Communities Coalition), which is also run by an all-volunteer Board.

Primarily, the youth and adults partnering to build The Living Room have prioritized prevention support in the form of: engagement with concerned adults, strengthening ties with community (through volunteering and participation on the Youth Advisory Council and Board) and building support networks. Our programming will also include the provision of alternative activities, life skills development and community education. Our Youth Advisory Council identified the following needs as priorities for The Living Room Programming:

· A safe, welcoming space to hang out

· Fun social activities

· Resource groups

· Support groups

· Anti-harassment education

Position Description

The Program Coordinator will work with The Living Room Board of Directors and Youth Advisory Council to coordinate safe afterschool drop-in programming in Clackamas County to GLBTQQ youth (ages 14-20) and develop a county-wide GSA (Gay Straight Alliance) network (GSAConnect).

This position is funded through a one-year contract (September 2010 – August 2011) with the Clackamas Mental Health Organization. Continuation after August 2011 is contingent upon the acquisition of further funds.

Essential Job Functions

· Provide direct service and referrals to youth

· Serve as Adult Co-Chair of the Youth Advisory Council

§ Support the Youth Co-Chair in facilitating meetings.

§ Assist the Youth Advisory Council in planning events and presenting ideas and perspectives to the Board.

§ Work with individuals and the group on developing life skills related to effective meeting participation, decision-making, and planning.

§ Provide training, mentorship and one-on-one support.

· Support youth participation in life skills development and prevention activities in The Living Room’s programming including:

§ Participation on the Board of Advisors and the Youth Advisory Council

§ Foster skills-building in: effective participation in meetings; building youth-adult partnerships; short- and long-term goal setting; event planning, promotion and implementation; advocacy; Communications – through our social networking sites, our blog, and events promotions; and Outreach

§ Planning and implementing social events

· Build partnerships with area service providers. Meet with GSAs, school counselors, and other school- and/or service-based faculty and staff (including alternative school programs, at-risk youth programs, and youth treatment facilities)

· Schedule and promote workshops and support groups.

· Lead planning of a County-wide GSA Summit.

· Support the development and strengthening of GSAs and a broader county-wide network.

§ Work with Oregon Safe Schools and Communities Coalition’s GSA Network to conduct outreach to existing GSAs and school counselors to identify specific support needs, recruit students for the county-wide GSAConnect network, and foster skills in community development, advocacy and leadership building among participants.

· Represent The Living Room in relevant coalitions including: The OSSCC Safe Schools Network and Clackamas County Youth Services Provider Network.

· Work with youth and community partners to co-facilitate trainings for social service providers in Clackamas County on cultural competency in working with GLBTQQ youth.

· Attend all Board functions and assist with program development and evaluation.

· Collect data needed for reporting purposes. Provide timely and accurate reports to the Board of Directors.


  • Bachelor’s degree in social work, counseling, or a related field OR a minimum of three years relevant experience.
  • Experience working with GLBTQQ youth. Familiarity with issues facing people across the entire continuum is essential; specific experience working within the transgender community is highly desired.
  • Experience working with school systems and/or GSAs.
  • Experience responding to crisis situations.
  • Knowledge of the youth-adult partnership model.
  • Knowledge of service agencies in Clackamas County, GLBTQQ, and/or Latino communities preferred.
  • Strong public speaking, group facilitation, and meeting participation.
  • Excellent skills in working collaboratively with youth and adults, in settings that include: faith-based communities, schools, after school programs, and/or social services.
  • Excellent organizational skills, multi-tasking abilities and the ability to improvise.
  • Competency with MicroSoft Word, social networking site usage, and other basic computer skills.
  • Bilingual (English / Spanish) preferred, but not required.
  • Valid Oregon Driver’s License and current car insurance.
  • Ability to pass a Criminal Background Check.

Hours per week: 30 hours per week, including frequent evenings and weekends

Reports to: Co-Chair, Board of Directors

Starting Salary: $13 per hour

Benefits: Healthcare stipend, two weeks paid time off

Application Instructions

Email the following materials to by 5pm on Friday, September 3:

  • Resume
  • Cover letter detailing how you fit the qualifications and your interest in this position
  • Answers to the following supplemental questions (500 words maximum per question):
    1. What challenges do GLBTQQ youth in Clackamas County face?
    2. Related to these challenges, describe objectives and outcomes that a weekly drop-in service specifically for GLBTQQ youth could provide.
    3. How would you build relationships with youth? With social service providers and adults within the school system?
  • Contact information for three references

The Living Room is an equal opportunity organization and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, religion, creed, marital status, national origin, political affiliation, disability, veteran status, or any other classifications applicable by law. Employees of The Living Room must pass a criminal background check prior to employment.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Clackamas Alternative Prom!

Yes... Get ready...

May 8
8-11 pm
Atkinson Memorial
710 Sixth Street, Oregon City

Ages 14-20.
$10 at the door.
No drugs or alcohol.

* Free dance lessons from across the decades from Daniel at Out Dancing.
* Games!
* DJ!
* Snacks!
* Lots of information and resources.

Organized for youth by youth!
Co-sponsored by The Living Room and PFLAG - Clackamas County.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

"Hostile Climate" in Oregon's Schools for GLBTQQ youth

Check out this report by OSERA (Oregon Student Equal Rights Alliance) and the Basic Rights Education Fund:

Here's a quote:

A hostile climate around sexual orientation and gender identity created barriers to high school graduation and educational performance for LGBT respondents.

Nearly 30% of LGBT students indicated that the hostile climate around sexual orientation and gender identity in their high school created barriers to graduating and going on to attend college.

LGBT respondents also indicated that the hostile climate at their college or university had a significant impact on their educational performance. Nearly one in five students cite frequent class absence and needing to take an extended break from school. One in ten cites not graduating in time (5 or more years).

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Report from Clackamas GSA Summit - January 23, 2010

Thanks to all of you who helped organize this weekend's GSA Summit in Clackamas County - and to those of you who attended! We had representatives from SEVEN high schools and Clackamas Community College:
-> Canby
-> Clackamas
-> Estacada
-> Gladstone
-> Milwaukie
-> Oregon City
-> West Linn

If you want to stay in touch with what we're doing with The Living Room, please become a Fan of us on Facebook - search for Living Room Clackamas, and you'll find us!

Upcoming events...
* Monthly youth (ages 14-20) social events: February 13 movie
* Help us organize the Clackamas County Alternative Prom!
* Fundraiser, Sunday, April 18
* Youth Drop-In services - starting late Spring!

Safe Schools Roundtable, January 26, 2010

On Tuesday, Carolyn and I represented The Living Room at the first Safe Schools Roundtable hosted by Oregon Safe Schools and Communities Coalition. The event was an opportunity for GLBTQ youth advocates to share information about the work we're doing to support safety for students and staff in schools, specifically around gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation. We discussed how each of our groups will support schools - and students - in assuring the implementation of the Oregon Safe Schools Act.

The following groups were represented at the table:
* The Living Room
* Oregon Safe Schools and Communities Coalition
* The Oregon GSA Network
* SMYRC (The Sexual and Gender Minority Youth Resource Center)
* Trans-Active
* Oregon PFLAG (Parents, Friends and Families of Lesbians and Gays)
* Love Makes a Family
* Basic Rights Oregon
* Q Center

Folks shared a number of ideas about how we could work together to decrease bullying, such as: providing broad-based training on how to be an ally and interrupting problematic language, supporting youth in increasing their ability to effect change in their own schools, and developing a coalition-based toolkit.

In our efforts to collaborate to support the Oregon Safe Schools Act and improve school safety for GLBTQ students (and faculty and staff), we will meet about every other month.