Bringing queer and trans joy to the community
Joey Moore (they/them), Rainbow Resource Centre's Director of Services, oversees Rainbow's Youth Program, Older Adult Program, Camp Aurora, Counselling, and Information and Intake Coordinator.
Hot off the heels of an extra-busy Pride Season, Rainbow Resource Centre rolled straight into a summer of providing vital services and resources to Manitoba's 2SLGBTQ+ community. Behind the scenes, Joey Moore (they/them), is working with Rainbow's team of program coordinators and counsellors to ensure 2SLGBTQ+ Manitobans have what they need to thrive.
"The staff at Rainbow are dedicated to creating safer spaces for queer and trans joy," says Joey. "Each month, Rainbow’s team provides a wide range of programs and services to meet the needs of the community they serve by providing multiple points of engagement for community."
For example, Older Adult Program Coordinator, Elizabeth McMechan, and Youth Program Coordinator, Madison Neapew / Blue Thunderbird Ikwe, recently teamed up to provide more intergenerational programming. “This in-demand programming, helps youth and older adults feel a sense of belonging and connectedness to the community spanning generations,” Joey says.
Rainbow’s annual summer program, Camp Aurora, Manitoba's only 2SLGBTQ+ sleepaway camp, is coming up fast. Led by Camp Aurora Coordinator, Alice Charles and supported by Madison (as well as School Equity and Inclusion Coordinator, Dene Guillas, Youth Support Coordinator, Tia Oberi, and Rainbow's Information and Intake Coordinator, Bryce Byron, who'll be providing canoe instructions), Camp Aurora, is one of the most important youth programs Rainbow offers. For a full exploration of Camp, see the feature story – here.
“Our counselling program helps our community envision their futures through queer and trans affirming practices," Joey says. The counselling team, including Kay Lamb, Mateo Llanilos, Chrystal Neault-Lount, and Tia Oberoi recently welcomed 50 new clients into their program. Kay and Chrystal also recently partnered with Training and Education Coordinator, Bre Calma, to deliver workshops for parents of queer and trans kids, giving them some much-needed support and answers to questions.
Rainbow's commitment to providing vital resources and care is constantly evolving
"Rainbow's commitment to providing vital resources and care is constantly evolving," Joey says. "We are thrilled to share that we are in the process of becoming a naloxone distribution site in Winnipeg. This initiative is an essential step in ensuring the safety and well-being of our community, not only as 2SLGBTQ+ people, but as new neighbors in the West Broadway neighborhood."
Currently, Rainbow's door service includes the distribution of snacks/drinks, harm reduction supplies, menstrual care items, hygiene items and resource navigation. Community members can also book appointments for gender affirming gear fittings, tours of our new space, or meet with a Protection Order Designate to apply for protection orders or a Commissioner of Oaths for name change documentation.
"Every single one of our service team members are front-line staff who dedicate their whole heart to serving our community," Joey says. "They are in an incredibly unique position of working with communities that they may be a part of and whose challenges may mirror their own experiences and challenges. There is so much love and dedication from our team and they continue to nurture spaces for the 2SLGBTQ+ community to thrive despite the challenges and horrifying narratives queer and trans people are facing today. I am so proud of how we have persevered as a team, and as a community, and we will continue to hold one another close."
To ensure these vital supports for Manitoba's 2SLGBTQ+ communities continues, please donate to Rainbow Resource Centre now.