‘I AM JAZZ’ AUTHOR LAUNCHES FIRST EVER ‘TRANS YOUTH AWARENESS WEEK’

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Tuesday, May 23, 2017

CALGARY- “Trans and gender diverse youth are too often alienated, rejected and isolated,” says Lindsay Peace, Vice-President of Skipping Stone, “This week is about changing that story and writing a new one that says there is space for you here. A space where they can know that people accept and are proud of them and all they’ve accomplished. We want these kids to know that we see them, how incredible they are and that we celebrate them for all for who they are.”

This is the guiding premise behind the Skipping Stone Foundation’s new initiative: Trans Youth
Awareness Week, which runs from Friday, May 26 to Sunday, June 4 and features 7 incredible events in 10 days.

The week is launched Friday night by a Scholarship Fundraiser event featuring a presentation by LGBTQ2+ youth advocate and award winning co-author of ‘I Am Jazz’, the story of a young transgender girl that spawned the hit television show on TLC.

“We are absolutely honoured to be able to bring Jessica Herthel to Calgary” says Amelia Newbert, President of Skipping Stone, “With her unique blend of intellect and humour, she creates an easy, open discussion of what it means to support the transgender and gender diverse youth in our lives. This is one of the questions we get asked the most and we’re so thrilled to be able to provide this perspective.”

The Scholarship Fundraiser is being held in the Jack Singer Lobby at Arts Commons on Friday, May 26 with a reception starting at 6pm and presentations at 7pm. It will be hosted by the incomparable, Mike Morrison.

The events continue on Sunday, May 28 with a free concert at the Palomino featuring Rae Spoon, The Wrong Kind of Girls, and other amazing guests.

The week continues with a youth dance party, workshops for parents and professionals, a movie night and then wraps up with a Tattoo Fundraiser on Sunday, June 4 at Immaculate Concept with all money from all tattoos and piercings done that day going directly to Skipping Stone.

“This week is an opportunity to educate and raise awareness of the challenges facing trans and gender diverse youth, most definitely,” says Newbert “but its also an opportunity to create some really positive and affirming messages to these youth around their gender identity. The importance and value of that can’t be overstated.”

“It’s going to be an amazing week with something for everyone so we’re encouraging community members, families, friends, allies, and just everyone, to come down, join us and above all just have a wonderful time.”

SKIPPING STONE WINS HEARTS OF EXCELLENCE

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Our Skipping Stone family was well represented and had lots to celebrate at Calgary OutLink's first annual Heart of Excellence event!

Joy Bowen-Eyre spoke and presented an award;
Lindsay Peace, Ace Peace and Tamara Gordon all received award nominations;
Ashleigh Yule won the Entrepreneurial Heart for her practice 'Ashleigh Yule Child Psychology', and Amelia Newbert won the Grand Heart for her human rights contribution.

We're so proud of all of them and all they do!

TRANS YOUTH AWARENESS WEEK ANNOUNCED

In our ongoing mission to provide youth positive and affirming opportunities surrounding their gender identity, we are thrilled to announce the launch of 'TRANS YOUTH AWARENESS WEEK'.

Running from Friday, May 26 through Sunday, June 4, Trans Youth Awareness Week features 7 incredible events all focusing on and featuring trans and gender diverse youth. From an evening with internationally renouned co-author of 'I Am Jazz', Jessica Herthel, to a by-donation concert with the award winning artist, Rae Spoon, to workshops, tattoos, and movie nights, there is something for everyone.

Check out our 'TRANS YOUTH AWARENESS WEEK' page for all the details and we look forward to seeing all of you out at some of these great events with us celebrating and recognizing our amazing trans and gender diverse youth.

SKIPPING STONE HOSTS JESSICA HERTHEL

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The Skipping Stone Foundation is pleased to announce our first annual scholarship benefit on Friday, May 26th 2017 at the Jack Singer Lobby at Arts Commons.

This year, we are hosting Jessica Herthel, LGBTQ2+ youth advocate and co-author of the critically acclaimed children's picture book about a transgender girl, I Am Jazz.

A Harvard Law School graduate, Broward Country Public School LGBTQ guideline and curriculum developer and former Director of the Stonewall National Education, Jessica now travels across North America concentrating on national speaking engagements, school district consultations and the imperative need to make schools and communities a safer place for all children.

This family-friendly event begins at 6pm with a catered reception and opportunity to meet and greet with Skipping Stone members and Jessica. At 7pm, Jessica will lead us in an inclusive and insightful discussion of what it means to be an ally and how to support the transgender and gender diverse youth in our lives. To end the evening, following the presentation we’ll be serving a little dessert.

All proceeds from this evening will go to Skipping Stone Foundation’s scholarship program.

We are thrilled that in our first year, we’ve been able to award $2000 in scholarships to youth who have made a positive impact on the trans and gender diverse community.

Through the proceeds of this evening, our aim is to be able to disperse over $10,000 next year.

Tickets are on sale now and you can learn more right here through our website or directly through the Arts Commons box office.

We hope to see you there!

 

TODAY IS TRANS DAY OF VISIBILITY

Each year March 31 marks the internationally recognized 'Trans Day of Visibility'. This day is an opportunity to mark the continuing need to raise awareness for the trans and gender diverse communities world wide.

This day serves to focus on the work needing to be done to end discrimination and create inclusivity and equality for trans individuals world wide. It serves as an opportunity to stand and celebrate gender diversity in all its forms and the amazing, resilient communities of trans individuals both locally and across the globe.

On this day, we want to acknowledge, celebrate and send a message to all the members of the trans community, and to the youth in particular...

Who are trans, transgender, non-binary, two-spirit, agender, genderqueer, gender diverse, gender creative or otherwise identified;

Who are able to stand visible today and equally to all those who aren't;

Know that you are important and valid and that we see you. Know we are cheering for you and together we will keep working towards a better world for ALL of us.

SKIPPING STONE FAMILY RECOGNIZED WITH 'HEART OF EXCELLENCE' NOMINATIONS

We have so many reasons to be proud of our Skipping Stone family but here are a few more... A huge number of them were nominated for Calgary OutLink's Heart of Excellence awards this year!

They include:
Amelia Newbert being nominated for the Grand Heart for her work in LGBTQ2+ rights and liberties.

Lindsay Peace being nominated for the Service Heart for her work with Skipping Stone in service of the community. Tamara Gordon was also nominated for the Service Heart for her working with the Calgary Board of Education.

Ace Peace being nominated for the The Dr. Gary Sanders Youth Heart for bettering the lives of LGBTQ2+ youth.

And, Ashleigh Yule being nominated for the The Entrepreneurial Heart for her work supporting the community and in particular trans and gender creative youth.

We're so proud of all of them.

http://www.calgaryoutlink.ca/heartofexcellence

SKIPPING STONE INTRODUCED AT LEGISLATURE

Skipping Stone had the pleasure and honour of being invited to the Legislature today.


Our members, Ace, Lindsay and Amelia were introduced to the house and acknowledged for all their hard work and advocacy.


A big thank you to Michael Connolly for inviting us, being such a wonderful host and all your kind words and to Ministers Hoffman, Eggen, Ganley, Payne and so many others for taking the time to talk about us, our work, the Metta Clinic, our scholarship programs and so much more on a busy budget day.

JOY BOWEN-EYRE JOINS SKIPPING STONE

We are thrilled to announce that long time youth and LGBTQ2+ advocate, Joy Bowen-Eyre has joined our Board of Directors.

Joy has 22 years experience working with and advocating for vulnerable and at risk youth. In 2010, she was elected as a Trustee for the Calgary Board of Education and has served as Board Chair since 2014.

We are excited to welcome Joy to the board and the immense experience and expertise she brings with her.

THIS WEEK ONLY! IMMACULATE CONCEPT FUNDRAISING PROMOTION

We thrilled to announce that we are partnering with Immaculate Concept Tattoo this upcoming week!


All this week, any donation up to $500 made to us at will receive a store credit in the same amount at Immaculate Concept Tattoo & Piercing.

Please email lindsay@skippingstone.ca once a donation has been made to receive your confirmation of store credit.

All donations raised through this initiative will go directly to trans and gender diverse youth through awards and scholarships.

SKIPPING STONE LAUNCHES 'TRANSGENDER COMMUNITY AWARD'

The Skipping Stone Foundation is thrilled to announce that it has partnered with Education Matters to launch the 'Transgender Community Award'.

This $2000 award recognizes a student entering post-secondary studies who has shown commitment as an emerging community leader and has had a positive impact on the trans and gender diverse communities.

Applications are open now at: https://www.educationmatters.ca/applying-for-a-scholarship/