“Hi my name is Mari (or Märi). I am one of the new interns at QYCO at PSKS. I am glad to become involved with any organization that helps and promotes peace to queer youth, especially queer youth who are on the streets. So far, I really like my internship. I’ve met a lot of good, kind, and supportive people. I love how this opportunity has helped bring regularity to my schedule. It feels really good to finally be working on something, especially something so important. Queer youth spaces are entirely beneficial to any community and we need there to be more of them and more people becoming involved in organizing and doing outreach for them.”
Mari doesn’t have dreams or aspiration. And she likes it that way. She believes that when you remove those words from your long-term plans, the things that can and will happen become limitless.
Mari is thinking in the now. She’s focused on being a leader in her community, knowing that the 50% of PSKS participants that identify as LGBTQ need specific resources in a queer oriented space.
More importantly, Mari wants to see the queer people in her community feel safe, accepted and to know they have a place to look to where people are going to look out for them.
Mari is one of our Queer Youth Community Organizing (QYCO) interns as part of our LEAP employment program. She found out about QYCO while staying in the PSKS shelter.
She applied, knowing she could use her experience as a leader in the community and familiarity of the sensitivities facing the queer community. The internship is only 2 weeks old and, whether it’s planned or not, Mari is already looking at how to make an impact in their community with their culminating project.
But whether focused on the short-term or the long-term, Mari succinctly states that her only goal is to go about themselves graciously.