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A2Z – Heroes

Blogging our way from A to Z on issues of sexual and gender identity - Heroes!

Heroes.  They are something we should all have, and they come in many shapes and sizes.  Some may be the usual suspects, heralds of a cause, but others can be found unexpected places.  In truth, I believe everyone has the potential to be a hero.  And I can’t think of any better way to demonstrate this fact that to share a few of my local Saskatchewan heroes who also happen to be members of the acronym community.

Mikayla Schultz is the founder of TransSask (support services).  She is a tireless advocate and campaigner for equality.  Through tremendous efforts, she recently put government to the test and had many successes with the signing of a declaration formalizing March 25-31 as Transgender Awareness Week in communities across Saskatchewan.

Don Cochrane is a former University of Saskatchewan professor, who continues to educate everyone he meets.  His groundbreaking work into subjects of importance to the Sexual Minority and Gender Variant community continue to force change, improving the lives of everyone in Canada.  You can see his hand all over this province, and especially at the annual Breaking the Silence conference here in Saskatoon.

Sarah Houghtaling is a local high school student.  She strives diligently to make lives better not only for those who attend school with her, but for minority students across our province.  A student activist who’s name I highly recommend taking note of.  She’s one of the many young people who WILL change our world for the better.  If you are ever able to attend one of her talks, DO!  You will be inspired.

Kay Williams is one of the most outspoken allies you will ever meet.  A determined advocate for her son, and a helping voice in a confusing world for parents new to the world of parenting LGBTT2QI children and youth.  Kay is a proud volunteer, and one of the founding members of PFLAG in Saskatoon.  She also was awarded the Peter Corren Award for Outstanding Achievement this year at Breaking the Silence – and yes, I teared up during her acceptance speech (which I recorded, and will share at some point).

Four individuals, all unique, all at different stages of their journey, all willing to do whatever it takes to see things become better for those around them.  All four are heroes, and all four I’m proud to call friend.

Who are the heroes in your life?

Where is Christopher Now? (a video of Ivan Coyote)

Ivan Coyote was invited to attend Breaking the Silence this year as our keynote speaker.  Her down to earth stories and sense of humor speak directly to each person in her audience, making you forget the distance between the stage and yourself.  As if sitting down for coffee with a friend who just needed to talk.

In the clip I’ve shared below, Ivan tells a story about Christopher, a much loved family member…  about how her cousin inspired her to go into schools.  About how we all shit, it’s the great leveler, and how a poop story can get students and others to identify and invest in Christopher.  How it can get people to care.

Take a few minutes and watch Ivan tell her story.  It won’t take long, but in those few minutes, you may change for the better…  thanks to a little boy named Christopher.

I’ll be sharing more of Ivan and the Breaking the Silence conference in the next couple of days.  I have more videos, more pictures, and more stories.  All of which are so very worth sharing.  So I hope you’ll keep coming back to see more.  🙂

BtS – hurry and register

Just a quick reminder before I’m off to work on my presentation for Breaking the Silence.  The conference is THIS WEEKEND!  Ivan Coyote will be performing on Friday night at 7:00 at the Broadway Theatre.  Tickets will be available at the door for $21, or you can get them for $15 by registering online.  There will also be $6 tickets at the door for Tomboy at 7:00 on Saturday night at the Roxy Theatre.  To attend the conference on the Saturday (which includes admittance to Ivan Coyote) you do need to register online at http://www.usask.ca/education/breaking-the-silence/online-registration.htm   Regular conference enrollment is only $52.50 with a special price of $21 for post-secondary students and the under-employed.  High school students can register for free (but do still need to register online).

More information is available at http://www.usask.ca/education/breaking-the-silence/index.htm

Drama at E.D. Feehan High School

Some of the best times in my life occurred in the theatre (and the classroom/dressingrooms beneath the theatre).  So today, when Raymon Montalbetti invited the girlie and I to come hang out with his fourth period drama class we JUMPED at the opportunity.  🙂

The students were so awesome.  So much great energy, and fabulous enthusiasm.  It was such a blast watching them work and experiment.  And the girlie (never one to turn down a chance to be on stage for ANY reason) jumped right in.  LOL

I really wish I’d had my camera with me, but I made do with my BlackBerry.  Here are a few shots of the wee girlie on stage with the high school students.  They were all so great with her.  It was a fabulous experience.

It’s been a very long time since I felt so at home anywhere.  Being so surrounded and immersed in collective creativity in a setting that speaks to my heart so directly is a powerful experience.  So thank you Ray.  Really, and truly.  Allowing us the privilege of being involved today meant the world to me.  It was a very obvious joy moment.

My Little Witchy-Poo!

Singing:  “One little, two little, three little witches…”

…and Optimus Prime.

 

Here’s Mrs. Tracy Painchaud (dressed as Belle) taking a photo of Mrs. Rhonda Carlston, Lily-Ann, and another girl in their class all dressed as witches.  And, of course, Optimus Prime is there – bogarting the limelight.  LOL

If you couldn’t tell, the wee girlie’s class had their Halloween party today.  And guess what?  Lily-Ann won a pumpkin.  😀  She can’t wait to carve it this weekend.  Love, love, love the celebration of Halloween and all the tremendous fun that goes along with it.

Here’s the wee girlie’s school costume from the back.  I love making tutus and have to show this one off.  It’s SUPER full and flouncy.  And I made up a matching bit to put on Lily-Ann’s hat (braided the tulle and sewed on a bow and some dingleballs).

 

Drama

Jewles (my younger sister) started an eight week drama program tonight.  Library night will now be Tuesdays, as every Monday for the next two months she and I will be heading off to my old highschool.  🙂

Jewles' drama class - all the students in a row

Drama Students

Jewles is the one with her knees pulled up to her chest, second from the far end.

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