The first Dare to Stand Out Conference of the year featured over 200 future teachers from the Faculty of Education, uOttawa.
Students gained skills to address homophobic and transphobic bully in their future classes.
One participant said: I would just like to once again thank you so much for everything that you stand for. I am a heterosexual, cis-gender woman but have many friends and family members that fall within the LGBTQ umbrella. Listening to your talk today gave me a better understanding of what my loved ones are going through and how important is it that they know I am an ally. I look foward to working with you in the future and wish you the best of luck with Jer’s Vision.
Another said: A big thank you for putting on the workshop today at the University of Ottawa! I admire your courage for sharing your very personal experiences with a room full of strangers, yet still keeping the atmosphere light with your wacky sense of humour! I learned a lot and hope to use this knowledge to make my future classrooms a safe place for ALL students.
In a recent email, a participant sent a poem:
to a Montreal boy who didn’t think Montreal was big enough for him:
…when you have spent too many years in the suburbs fundraising for p.t.a. and you are married to a hockey and soccer dad who has 4 job changes in 5 years and you can’t remember the last time you got a good sleep never mind s-x and you spend five cold canadian winter weeks hacking in bed telling your seven year old you are not going to die and hope you are not lying and you can’t hug him today because you might be contagious then you recover and finally get some sleep and maybe some — and someone at the arena tells your beautiful 9 year old son he skates like a girl and he comes home crying and finally hockey season is at an end and you spend an awesome sunny hot summer swimming and hiking and spelunking with your kids watching the freckles come out on their noses and you throw back your head and laugh with them out loud and you want to stop time and then someone who doesn’t go Awwwww when the fireworks pop and the blue sparks descend tries to drag down the one you love for standing up for your son and someone you meet says a friend of mine died this summer got beat up for being gay in nova scotia and he doesnt cry when he says it you will remember why you love who you love and smile at everybody else and then everything will be rosy and fuzzy like a picture taken through a vaseline smeared wide angle camera lens….