Learning Though Adjacencies
The West Island LGBTQ2+ Centre
When the West Island LGBTQ2+ Centre
first opened there wasn’t any support for the local LGBTQIA+ and Two Spirit community. For support, teens and youth would have to go all the way in to downtown Montreal in order to participate in those programs. This could mean up to two hours of travel time, and wasn't always accessible for teens.
In 2011 a drop-in started. Within a year, they were already thinking about what else was possible. In 2013, they launched a family support group, an idea that came from the families themselves. Then it was identified that there was a need to have senior and LGBTQIA+ and Two Spirit programs. The Centre had been around for five years, and many of the teens were aging out of the existing programming. So the natural next step was to create young adult programming for 20 to 30 year-olds.
Over the years of the Centre growing, there was an increase in attendance in transgender individuals. And so in 2018, a transgender support group was created. Again, this was filling a gap in the support system.
Each of these new ideas was organic and continued to grow out of previous strengths; this is what we call "learning through adjacencies."
Watch the whole video
[Photo by Cecilie Johnsen on Unsplash]