Saskatchewan

New hub for queer and trans youth is 'first of its kind' in Regina, says UR Pride Centre

A new space in downtown Regina will be a hub for queer and trans youth, one that organizers hope will help combat problems like depression and underemployment among this population.

Federal government announces $218K for centre that will also offer programming

Raphaële Frigon, second from left, Jacq Brasseur, centre, and MP Ralph Goodale, right, took part in a ribbon cutting on Thursday to officially open a centre for queer and trans youth in Regina. (CBC News)

A new space in downtown Regina will be a hub for queer and trans youth — one that organizers hope will help combat problems like depression and underemployment amongst this population.

On Friday, the federal government announced $218,000 over the next 14 months for the new space, which will be operated by the UR Pride Centre for Sexuality and Gender Diversity, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

"It's the first of its kind in Regina," said Raphaële Frigon, the Pride Centre's program director.

She wants to see youth drive the programming offered in the space at 2139 Albert St., whether that's cooking classes or organizing events during Pride Week.

She hopes to see it become an LGBT centre for all of Regina in the future.

"So the goal is to create this venue for queer youth … to learn and grow, but also we want it to be embraced by all of the community."

Raphaële Frigon, program director at the UR Pride Centre for Sexuality and Gender Diversity, speaks about the importance of the centre to vulnerable youth. (CBC News)

Jacq Brasseur, executive director of the UR Pride Centre, says that youth in the LGBT community face higher rates of poverty and mental health concerns, and negativity in some corners.

"There is still some fear across LGBT communities about holding hands with their partner in public and other sorts of things," they said.

"We hope that by building sort of a really visible space in Regina, right downtown on Albert Street, that people will see us, and connect with us and build friendships."

While the federal money will keep the space open for 14 months, Frigon says the centre will look for ways to keep the centre operational beyond that time frame.

Corrections

  • An earlier version of this story identified the organization operating the new space as the University of Regina Pride Centre. In fact, the organization is the independent non-profit UR Pride Centre for Sexuality and Gender Diversity.
    Apr 26, 2019 10:45 AM CT

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