Two-Spirit & Indigenous LGBTQQIA Mentors, Elders & Grandparents Support Circle
Brought together and supported by the Native Youth Sexual Health Network, the Two-Spirit and Indigenous LGBTQQIA Mentors, Elders, and Grandparents Support Circle is an effort to increase access to identity-affirming culture and support.
What we do:
The Circle aims to share information about community and cultural activities, including ceremonies, gatherings, events and workshops, to provide peer support and help facilitate access to culture in ways that are safe and affirming of our identities. Who we are:
Circle members include Indigenous/Aboriginal community members who identify as Two-Spirit and/or along the spectrum of Lesbian, Gay Bisexual, Transgender, Transexual, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual (LGBTQQIA) as well as names or words from our Original languages. It also includes community organizers and youth leaders at Native Youth Sexual Health Network. This group is also open and inclusive of those who are questioning labels and identities as well as Indigenous community allies.
You can contact us at: email@example.com Big thanks to the Dodem Kanonhsa for initially hosting us with space and support.
You can also get in touch with us through the Dodem Kanonhsa in Toronto.
What is ‘Two-Spirit’?
There are many definitions and understandings that are nation-specific (Ex. Navajo, Cree, Dene, Anishinabe) and each individual person will have their own way of expressing their Two-Spirit-ness. Also, not all Indigenous people identify as Two-Spirit and have other ways and words to express their gender and sexual identity. Here is one explanation from the Two-Spirit Society of Denver that may be helpful and please check out our Two-Spirit Resource Directory for more information. “The term Two-Spirit refers to another gender role believed to be common among most, if not all, first peoples of Turtle Island (North America), one that had a proper and accepted place within indigenous societies. This acceptance was rooted in the spiritual teachings that say all life is sacred and that the Creator must have a reason for making someone different. This gender role was not based in sexual activities or practices, but rather the sacredness that comes from being different. This definition is not meant to replace cultural and traditional teachings, which speak to this role. It is intended to find common ground and to help educate in a contemporary context.”
The following is a list of current members of this circle so you can get to know us! You can connect with us individually or as a collective. Percy, is a Syilx 2Spirit woman and former sex trade worker from the Penticton First Nations,(Okanagan) who lives with bilateral hearing loss and multiple learning disabilities. She has been a guest in Toronto for the past 15 years and as an Indigenous ally to this land and it's people espouses the 7 grandfather teachings and Guswentah. She is also a community-based educator and researcher. She has over twenty years of social service practice. “My mantra for many years has been to create a culture of healing from an Indigenous/Aboriginal worldview for the educational, social service services systems when working with my communities. My research interests continue to be: Indigenous Worldviews/Knowledges, healing perspectives, social determinants of health and wellness and critical pedagogies when engaging with Indigenous people/land and sovereignty.” Percy holds a Collaborative Masters in Social Work with Women & Gender Studies and is currently completing her doctoral work in the Department of Sociology & Equity Studies at OISE, University of Toronto.
- Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Contact: Margaret.email@example.com