An Interview with OUT Saskatoon
We were recently able to chat with Melody Wood from OUT Saskatoon to learn more about what they do. Check out our interview!
Thanks for taking the time to meet with us Melody! Tell us about the history of OUT Saskatoon in a few sentences.
OUTSaskatoon began as Gay & Lesbian Health Services (GLHS) in 1991. In 2005, GLHS changed its name to The Avenue Community Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity in order to better reflect the wide communities that it served. In April 2015, the board of directors elected to change the name of the centre to OUTSaskatoon in order to increase visibility and take a brave step "OUT" into the larger community.
What is the organization's current mandate?
To uplift 2SLGBTQ people by leading, serving, and supporting in a dynamic community. We foster physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health through intentional services and meaningful engagement.
How many folks do you serve each year with all programming and support?
We support folks through counselling, education, pride home, gender based violence, two spirit programming and youth programming. We serve thousands of people every year.
How have the needs of the community changed in the last few years with the pandemic?
2SLGBTQ people were affected financially and with mental health during the pandemic and OUTSaskatoon is working to assist these folks as the pandemic is still not over.
What is one of OUT's greatest successes in the past year?
OUTSaskatoon faced a financial crisis and through the will of the board, we were able to find our way through and almost through our stabilization period.
How can allies/members of the general public best support you? Volunteer, give money, something else?
Talk to board members, we are open to discussions, donations, and partnerships. We love donations to help our programming but we also love volunteers!
Thanks Melody! We’re so happy to collaborate with OUT Saskatoon via our Sweet Goodness program.