Creating Change


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The National LGBTQ Task Force proudly presents a robust program of 25 Day Long Institutes at Creating Change. All Institutes presentations are 9 AM — 6 PM on both Wednesday and Thursday.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The Racial Justice Institute
The Institute's primary purpose is to offer Creating Change participants a range of tools for working more effectively towards racial justice in our churches, communities, campaigns, and workplaces. This Day Long Institute provides a balance of self-reflection opportunities with engaging learning activities and deeper intersectional analysis of how racial justice and LGBT liberation connect in contemporary social justice movements. The Racial Justice Institute has a rich history at Creating Change. Very well attended and well regarded, this Institute has grown exponentially in size and scope. Facilitated by a team of seasoned racial justice trainer/facilitators, the Institute will be steeped in an anti-oppression lens that reflects the intersections of gender, sexuality, class, ability and race to offer sessions that are creative, thoughtful and give participants practical skills to make a difference through the work we do every day.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Relight the Fire: Bringing the LGBTQ and HIV/AIDS Communities Back Together, Building Leaders for a Reunited Movement
Gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men are still highly and disproportionately impacted by the HIV epidemic. Specifically, young men of color continue to make up a large portion of the new infections each year. In response, AIDS United is pleased to offer this day-long institute that will focus on strengthening the connection, shared mission, and effective alliances between HIV/AIDS and LGBTQ organizations and communities. Relight the Fire will be a highly interactive experience seeking to engage young men in particular, interested in working more effectively to reconnect the LGBTQ and HIV/AIDS movements. During the course of the institute we will share stories and strategies, strengthen our understanding of the issues, forge stronger alliances and harness the power of our efforts. We will also share our skills in such areas as: community mobilization, coalition building, public education, strategic partnerships, cross-movement work and messaging. Finally, we will provide information about the historical relationship between LGBT and HIV/AIDS movements, including the contributions of people of color. So come out to our institute, build and strengthen your leadership skills, and let's work together to reinvigorate the LGBTQ movement around ending the HIV epidemic. Make your voice heard in shaping and reuniting the movements!

Co-facilitated by Yolo Akili Robinson of AIDS United & Charles Stephens of the Counter Narrative Project.

Embodied Leadership: Transformational Practices for the Fierce Urgency of Now
Is it possible to see activism and social justice work as an opportunity to embody sustainability for ourselves and those around us? What does it mean to actually embody the justice and liberation we are seeking in the broader world? This highly experiential institute will offer a framework, specific transformational practices, and an opportunity for application and reflection.

Faculty: Shannyn Vincente, Sage Hayes and Claudia Horwitz and others.

More $$$, More Power: Lead the Way to Fundraising Success
Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned fundraiser, raising money from community members, neighbors, family, and other stakeholders can be one of the most rewarding strategies your organization or group uses for LGBTQ liberation! Join us for a Day Long Institute to build grassroots fundraising power.

Let's come together and build values-based skills for raising money:
  • Share our personal stories about money and how these impact our values, attitudes and skills regarding asking people for money
  • Recognize how asking people for money can be relationship building as well as grow your volunteer base!
  • Why direct asking is the #1 most effective way to raise funds for anything
  • Build lists from people you know or have already given to your organization, write scripts and explore who to ask and when to ask
  • Practice the components of a strong ask
  • Strategize about how to build out a fundraising program by building a team of volunteers & board members who know how to ask for money and ask often

  • This Institute is presented by Kathleen Campisano, Malcolm Shanks, Justin Lemley, and Saurabh Bajaj, all staff of the National LGBTQ Task Force

    WE BE FIERCE! Queer & Trans Youth of Color Rise Up!
    This Day Long Institute is about how we support and center the leadership of LGBTQ Youth of Color in our organizations and movement for racial and economic justice. This institute is led by queer and trans youth of color organizers. This institute is for queer and trans youth of color and adult allies working with queer and trans youth of color while organizing for racial and economic justice. This is a space for youth organizers to share strategies and challenges in their work and build resiliency with other young leaders while adult allies/supporters listen to the needs of the youth in the movement. This institute will take place in two parts:

    Part 1: WE BE FIERCE! Youth and adult allies will have the opportunity to meet in separate spaces to hold interactive discussion on needs, challenges, and best practices for centering the leadership of youth in organizing for racial and economic justice.

    Part 2: Queer & Trans Youth of Color Rise Up! We will delve deep into skill-building for powerful and impactful youth organizing that is by and for queer and trans youth of color. FIERCE will share our new organizing model and campaign planning practices through youth led workshops and fun activities.

    Practice Spirit, Do Justice Day-Long Institute: Anti-Oppressive Spiritual Care for Activists of Faith
    Those of us who care about justice find ourselves in painful and unsettling times — yet with unrest comes the potential for change. To stay in the struggle for the long haul, we need care — both as individuals and as communities. So often, just when we are at the tipping point of change, we become too exhausted and burn out, having worn ourselves and our communities to the bone. As spiritual people we are poised to provide care, yet we need to be intentional about the care we offer ourselves and our communities. We need to understand self-care and communal care as an integral part of social justice work, and we need to build the skills that it takes to engage in spiritual and pastoral care in the face of dynamics of privilege, trauma, and marginalization. This year's Practice Spirit, Do Justice Day Long Institute will offer a communal space for experiencing care and sharing practices informed by our many varied experiences, identities, and spiritual backgrounds. Together we will wrestle with hard questions and co-create anti-oppressive spiritual and pastoral care. Come and bring the practices that help you heal and sustain you, come with an open heart and mind to learn the practices and wisdom of others, come desiring to create ongoing community.

    Coordinated by Lynn Young & Teo Drake

    Advancing LGBTQ Youth Mental Health and Well-Being: Building Capacity in Our Communities
    How can we empower youth to bring their whole selves when accessing care and services when faced with so many barriers? Through interactive participation, attendees will learn from a macro to micro perspective how oppression, stigma and policy affect our ability to serve the mental health needs of LGBTQ* youth. Participants will identify and confront the intersections between LGBTQ* mental health, other disparities and forms of oppression, and policies affecting mental health access to create a framework for creating individual and collective action. Participants will have the opportunity share their own experiences and learn from their fellow participants' experiences regarding strategies to create local, state, and regional change to better serve the needs of LGBTQ youth. Participants will work together to identify new strategies to engage schools, mental health organizations, and local advocates in providing LGBTQ youth mental health resources, and develop plans to create measureable and sustainable change.

    This Institute is presented by staff of The Trevor Project.

    From Stonewall to Stop and Frisk: Policing and criminalization of LGBTQ communities
    This Institute will explore the current moment and historical legacy of policing and criminalization of LGBTQ communities. "Policing" comes in many different forms. Policing appears as a larger systemic structure of control and violence against the self determination we seek over our bodies. Participants will discuss patterns of policing, police violence and criminalization of LGBTQ communities across the country. The Institute will highlight various campaigns and organizing models across the country to provide resource sharing and tools for participants to organize against policing and criminalization in their communities.

    This Institute is organized by BreakOUT!, Lambda Legal, the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, Native Youth Sexual Health Network, PrYSM, and Streetwise and Safe.

    LGBTQ Campus Resource Professionals Institute
    The Institute, sponsored by the Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals (the Consortium), provides professional development, skills building, and networking for those who have professional roles supporting LGBTQ people on college and university campuses. The Institute, intersectional in nature, is grounded in anti-racism and social justice principles and focuses on access, inclusion, and equity for LGBTQ students and employees in higher education. This session is designed for those who engage in, or plan to engage in, LGBTQ work on college campuses. The Institute is for Consortium members with limited space for nonmembers who are interested. To learn more about the Consortium, please visit our website

    The Ally Institute
    Want to practice how to respond to comments like "That's SO gay" in the office? Want to learn about the importance of bringing gender-neutral restrooms to your campus? Want to challenge arguments about reverse racism? Want to make some music?

    The Minnesota GLBTA Campus Alliance presents the fifth annual Ally Institute at Creating Change. Designed for new and seasoned allies to and within Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans*, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual (LGBTQIA) communities, the Ally Institute aims to create a brave space for all those interested in gaining knowledge and skills related to gender and sexual diversity while giving participants an opportunity to ask the questions and have the conversations they know they need but don't always know how to get. Participants from all identities will consider how allies dedicated to the work of collective liberation movements can help create inclusive and accessible environments in the different positions where they live, work, play, and worship. Through a mix of facilitated activities, skill sharing, small group work, and arts and crafts, attendees will learn key concepts for understanding and educating about LGBTQIA communities within a social justice frame and will be given opportunities to develop new advocacy tools, helping them become more effective change agents in all areas of their life.

    Student Leader Institute/Campus Pride
    Take action to queer up your campus with Campus Pride. This Day Long Institute focuses on giving college students tools to make an impact on their campus. Join us for a day of tool sharing, challenging dialogue, and intersectional justice. Learn from fellow students and take away practical tools on coalition building, leadership, and campus-wide engagement. Take away resources like the Campus Pride Index, the Trans Policy Clearing House, Stop the Hate, and many more!

    YouthLink Institute: Moving It To The Next Level
    This Institute, sponsored by CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers, is a youth-led, adult supported session designed to take a critical look at the major issues facing LGBTQ youth across the country and how those issues are being addressed in the movement. This interactive workshop will feature LGBTQ youth centers and supporters who will share their personal experiences, programs and ideas with attendees, as well as lead interactive group discussions and break-out sessions about oppression, identity, raising awareness on local, regional and nationwide advocacy and policy issues. This program is designed to tap into the experiences, needs and skill sets of young people working in and with LGBTQ community centers, with an intersectional focus on youth empowerment, and working toward systematic change. Follow the discussion at #YLCC15.

    This Institute is organized and presented by YouthLink, Safe Schools Action Network, BAGLY, Hetrick-Martin Institute, Center for Artistic Revolution and Advocates for Youth.

    Working WITH Youth: A youth-centered approach to integrating the needs, experience and the expertise of queer and trans young people in movement work
    This advanced Day Long learning Institute is aimed at training adults who want to increase their individual and/or organizational capacity to effectively mobilize, engage and collaborate with queer and trans young people. We will highlight research and explore initiatives related to LGBTQ youth leadership development, introduce tools to assess organizational readiness for - and consider approaches to - increasing individual, organizational and system-wide capacity to do long term movement work that includes queer and trans young people.

    The Working WITH Youth Institute is organized and presented by Daunasia Yancey and Jessica Flaherty, staff members of BAGLY: The Boston Alliance of GLBT Youth (BAGLY), a youth-led, adult supported organization.

    Sexual Rights Are Human Rights — Let's Claim Them!
    Pleasure. Desire. Sex. Sexuality. Where do these fit in the sexual freedom movement? Where does sexual freedom fit in the human rights movement? And why are pleasure and desire so rarely discussed when we're working to secure our human rights? We're going to fix that right here as we make space in the conversation for pleasure and desire! While the movement for dignity, equality, and justice &mdaash; human rights — is growing, sexual rights remain at the margins. But no more! Using the International Planned Parenthood Federation's (IPPF) Sexual Rights Declaration as an anchor, we will explore topics such as reproductive choice and health, family rights, gender identity, economic justice, freedom from state and religious violence, the role of the state/government in ensuring and protecting sexual rights, and certainly, our right to experience and claim pleasure as central to our sexuality. Through a series of group activities and collective discussions, as well as hands-on exercises, the Institute will equip participants with the knowledge, language, and skill set to enter and reshape the national discourse, to build alliances with other social justice issues, and to reclaim sexual freedom, both personal and political, as their human right.

    This Institute is presented by the Woodhull Sexual Freedom Alliance and sponsored by the US Human Rights Network.

    Executive Directors/CEO Institute
    This year's Institute involves both presentations and interactive small and large group sessions of relevance to nonprofit E.D's/CEO's. Topics will include: (1) a legal update on the freedom to marry followed by a group discussion on what the pace of this progress means for our organizations and our movement, its ramifications on fundraising, and the likely backlash by right wing extremists; (2) a session on the basics of strategic planning and examples of different approaches to annual and long-term planning; (3) small group breakout sessions based upon various "demographic" factors among the people and organizations present; (4) a participant roundtable for productive group problem-solving and mentoring; and (5) a networking lunch hosted by the co-convening organizations. Come prepared to share your own best and worst practices stories! This session is specifically for nonprofit Executive Directors/CEO's only.

    This Institute will be led by four seasoned nonprofit CEO's/E.D.'s: Lorri L. Jean, Los Angeles LGBT Center; Kate Kendell, National Center for Lesbian Rights; Terry Stone, CenterLink and Lance Toma, Asian & Pacific Islander Wellness Center.

    AAPI Focus: Building a Queer AAPI Movement
    Join this movement-building Day Long Institute for Asian American, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander (AAPI) LGBTQ people. Network with LGBT AAPI activists from around the country. We will discuss concrete ways to overcome barriers, leverage resources, and create models for more effective LGBTQ AAPI organizing. Learn strategies to advocate for public policy issues, increase visibility, and counter homophobia and transphobia in the larger AAPI community and racism within larger LGBT movements. Gain an understanding of Asian American, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander queer communities in the U.S. and the intersections between social justice movements that engage them. You will leave with a better understanding of the multiplicity of our communities across gender, nationality, and religion and how this affects our ability to build a national movement. This Institute is intended only for Asian American (including South Asian and Southeast Asian) and Pacific Islander attendees.

    The Black Institute: What Does Equality and Justice Mean to You?t
    Black LGBTQ and same-gender loving (SGL) people too often face harsh realities that are unique to living at the intersection of our racial and LGBTQ identities. Heightened health disparities, targets of the school-to-prison pipeline, and lack of employment opportunities are just a few of the realities that define the Black LGBTQ/SGL experience. In order to move forward and mobilize a movement that is "For Us, By Us," we must take the time to define what justice looks like for us in modern American society. We will come together and explore how we mobilize our community to stand together to speak truth to power and move forward as a united force for positive change for Black LGBTQ/SGL people. We will create tangible next steps for an innovative and life-changing movement for equality, equity and justice at the Institute.

    This Institute is organized and presented by the National Black Justice Coalition.

    Unión Equals Fuerza: Latino Institute
    We invite you to participate in a unique opportunity to ignite change on Thursday, February 5, 2015 in Denver, Colorado. Unión Equals Fuerza: Latino Institute is a full-day gathering that addresses lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues affecting Latina/o communities. Join diverse groups of LGBT Latinos/as and allies from across the country to foster supportive relationships and build each others' capacity to advance LGBT Latina/o activism. Unión=Fuerza is dedicated to ending LGBT prejudice, increasing understanding about sexual and gender diversity in Latino communities, and improving the quality of life for LGBT Latinos and our families. Unión=Fuerza is the only annual national LGBT Latina/o day-long training organized by and for LGBT Latinas/os in a bilingual and culturally competent space. Join us for life changing conversations, update each other on the most pressing issues for our communities, and jump into the latest skills-based training for organizers! The space allows for a Latina/o social and cultural celebration of our rich identities in queer inclusive spaces. Attendees include community advocates, nonprofit leaders, students, academics, government officials, politicians, artists, media producers, and more! This is the third annual Latino Institute, which brought together over 250 LGBT Latinas/os and allies from 20 states and 40 Latino and LGBT inclusive organizations in 2014. The Latino Institute planning committee is co-chaired by Lambda Legal and LULAC in collaboration with representatives from over 20 LGBT and Latino serving organizations. This is a bilingual Spanish and English training. Get involved at

    Elder Institute: What's Your Story? Passion, Elder Activism and Movement Building
    LGBT elders are engaged in local and state advocacy struggles and serve as powerful spokespeople to educate the broader public about pervasive discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodation, education, medical care, and other aspects of their lives. Hear from LGBT activists and providers about how they work to build an age-inclusive activist movement, raise awareness, and advocate for change in their communities. Through interactive group workshops, storytelling and panels, audience members and presenters will share how they tackle issues of primary importance to LGBT elders and elders of color.

    The Creating Change LGBT Elder Institute is hosted by SAGE (Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Elders) and facilitated by Serena Worthington, Director of National Field Initiatives for SAGE.

    Desire Mapping Institute
    As our ancestor and movement trailblazer Audre Lorde wrote famously — the erotic is power! Sex isn't 'beside the point' in our activism, it is the bedrock of our authentic selves, and one of the critical sources of strength that our enemies would have us betray and deny. Desire Mapping is a dynamic tool for sexual liberation that hinges on the idea that until we can claim our authentic desire — and not simply capitulate to or parrot the 'wants' that others have designed and approved for us — we cannot seek justice and re-make the world in the radical, generative ways that we must. In fact, the more we bury and deny our erotic truths, the more our vision for true liberation falters.

    For the past six Creating Change Conferences, a glittering faculty of queers of many ages, genders, races, sexual orientations and sexpressions have come together to create a unique, transformational interactive workshop. We are inspired by the hundreds of people who have taken a Desire Mapping workshop and reported breathtaking changes in their lives — whether pursuing a desire they didn't believe they deserved to act on, venturing into new territory with a lover of many years, or telling the truth on a first date.

    We are also amazed by the work we have been able to do together in the wake of Mapping — challenging narrow visions of queerness in our organizing work; pushing back on oppressive behaviors in our workplaces, families, and in our broader work for justice; trying new things out when our fears had held us back.

    Join us for the Day Long Desire Mapping Institute. Come to uncover or recover some part of yourself you've left behind; come to share or be silent; come and be amazed and buoyed by the strength and the courage of your peers.

    Faculty: Jaime M. Grant, Global Trans Research and Advocacy Project, Desire Mapping Founder; Amelie Zurn, therapist, Mapping co-creator; Ignacio Rivera, Global Trans Research and Advocacy Project, Sex Activist; Kenyon Farrow; Debanuj DasGupta; Andrea Jenkins; Harper Jean Tobin; Cary Alan Johnson

    From the School Board to Capitol Hill: Creating Change Through Policy to Build Safer Schools
    The policy landscape has shifted dramatically since GLSEN began advocating for safe, supportive and inclusive school policies nearly two decades ago. Nineteen states and the District of Columbia now have anti-bullying policies that include sexual orientation and gender identity, and thirteen have non-discrimination policies protecting LGBT students. But we still have a long way to go. The majority of states still do not have state-wide inclusive policies, many that do face challenges implementing them effectively, and Congress has been slow to act on the national level. Advocates are essential in the fight to pass and implement effective policy solutions to create safe schools nationwide. Participants in this Day Long Institute will review the current policy landscape, examine case studies of passage and implementation of state-level legislation, identity the locations with the greatest opportunities for action, and discuss specific strategies to contribute to the safe schools movement.

    This Institute is organized by GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network.

    Online Focus: Digital Strategy Training Institute
    At the sixth annual Digital Strategy Training Institute (DSTI), you will spend a day hearing from experts about the latest digital tools and online advocacy strategies that you can incorporate into your work, how to find social media tools that are appropriate for your budget, how to stay on top of the latest new media trends, and how to successfully implement them at your organization. Sponsored by GLAAD, Purpose, and UltraViolet.

    Bisexual Organizing Institute
    In 1991 June Jordan, a black bisexual theorist and poet, called the bisexual movement a "mandate for revolutionary Americans planning to make it into the twenty-first century on the basis of the heart...consecrated to every struggle for justice, every struggle for equality, every struggle for freedom." The bisexual community embraces intersectional dialogues and continues to work toward a world with safe spaces for every person. This year we'll look back at recent successes in bisexual* parity and inclusion, while also looking forward to what's next. Participants will interactively engage with organizers from BiNet USA, The Bisexual Resource Center, and The BiCast and will walk away with the tools and techniques that helped make campaigns like "Lifting the Google Block," "#BiHealthMonth," and "Bisexual Inclusion at NYC Pride" successful instances of bisexual, pansexual, fluid, and queer inclusion.

    Transgender Self-Empowerment: Building Communities for Resilience, Safety, Health, and Life
    Transgender people experience systematic unemployment and underemployment, discrimination, harassment, violence, and murder at alarming rates. Ninety percent 90% of transgender people surveyed in Injustice at Every Turn, the national survey conducted by the National Gay LGBTQ Task Force and the National Center for Transgender Equality, reported experiencing harassment, mistreatment, and discrimination. In the same survey, 19% reported being denied a house or apartment and 11% reported being evicted from a home or apartment because of their gender expression/identity. Fifty-three percent reported being harassed in places of public accommodations which includes restaurants, bathrooms, buses, airplanes and trains. Forty-one percent reported not having identification that matched their gender identity. Over one-fifth of those who interacted with police reported harassment. This anti-transgender bias puts transgender people at great risk in society and places transgender people's health and economic, emotional, and physical well-being at risk, while significantly lowering life expectancy. The pervasive negative impacts of this anti-transgender bias coupled with structural racism have been especially devastating for transgender people of color and has caused transgender woman of color, particularly black transwomen, to be murdered on our streets with seeming impunity.

    In this Day Long Institute, we will explore community building across race, class, and cultural barriers to assist both individuals and the community at large in being resilient in the face of systematic oppressions and violence. We will unpack different community building models traditionally used outside the LGBT community and others. The hope and intent is to be practical as well as about sharing analysis and ideas so that there are "take aways" for everyone to improve community building.

    This Institute is organized by Kylar Broadus, Senior Public Policy Counsel, Trans Civil Rights Project, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.

    Presenters: Cecilia Chung, Transgender Law Center; Milan Alexander, BreakOUT; Bamby Salcedo, Trans Latina Coalition; Elliot Fukui, Audre Lorde Project; Danny Kirchoff, Transgender Law Center; Arianna Lint, SunServe; Andrea Jenkins, Senior Policy Aide for Minneapolis City Councilmember Elizabeth Glidden and Trans People of Color Coalition; Mara Keisling, National Center for Transgender Equality; Kris Hayashi, Transgender Law Center; Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, National Center for Transgender Equality; Tiq Milan, GLAAD; and Gabriel Foster, Trans Justice Project.