Honoring LGBTQ People as Equal: A Statement of Inclusion

At Child & Family Resources, we are proud to join Healthy Teen Network in their Statement of Inclusion for the teens and adults in the LGBTQ community. To Choose love-based responses—not fear—to honor our common humanity. Honor #LGBTQ youth as equals. #PrideMonth #Youth360. 

The most recent senseless act of terror based in fear and hate affirms this call to action to let love reign over fear. Our thoughts are with the victims, their families, the people of Orlando, and the LGBTQ community around the world.

“There are only two emotions: love and fear. All positive emotions come from love, all negative emotions from fear. From love flows happiness, contentment, peace, and joy. From fear comes anger, hate, anxiety and guilt... If we're in fear, we are not in a place of love. When we're in a place of love, we cannot be in a place of fear.” 

- Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Healthy Teen Network declares it way past time to let go of fear of LGBTQ people once and for all and let love reign in its stead. Fear leads people to be intolerant of those different from us, including differences in our sexual orientations and gender identities. Fear leads people to say hateful things about others so as to safeguard our beliefs, and thus ourselves. Fear leads to judgment. And fear leads to violence.

Fear manifests itself in name-calling, bullying, and physical harm directed toward people who identify as a member of an other than heterosexual sexuality- or gender identity-based culture group (including, lesbian, gay, bisexual, two-spirit, trans, intersex and queer cultures). Fear manifests itself in health and socioeconomic disparities among the LGBTQ population compared to their heterosexual peers, including in substance use, HIV disease, suicide, and homelessness. And fear manifests itself in public policies (approved by fear-motivated policymakers) that discriminate against people who identify as a member of an other-than-heterosexual sexuality- or gender identity-based culture group. This includes laws passed recently in several states in obvious reaction to the ever-broadening acceptance of and civil rights protections for LGBTQ people.

Healthy Teen Network envisions a world where all adolescents and young adults lead healthy and fulfilling lives. To reach this vision, all of us must repudiate fear-based responses to human differences. Instead all of us must choose love-based responses that honor our common humanity. For people who are LGBTQ, such loving action includes insisting on their rights to raise children without judgment, to sexuality education without shame or stigma, to health and social services without bias, to employment without harassment, and to public accommodations (including restrooms of one’s choosing) without interference.     

Healthy Teen Network declares it way past time to let go of fear of LGBTQ people once and for all and let love reign in its stead. Do you share our belief that a world with adolescents and young adults leading healthy and fulfilling lives includes young people who identify as LGBTQ? What are you doing already, and what more will you do, to honor their equal worth?

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Lives You’re Changing: Kate and Daniel’s Story

Every day, Child & Family Resources’ Building Bright Futures program helps parents increase their knowledge of early childhood development, gain positive parenting techniques, provide early detection of developmental delays, and strengthen their children’s readiness for school and success. In FY2013-14, we served nearly 400 families and 500 children in Arizona. Here is just one of the many personal stories which showcases the impact and success of this very special program.

Kate, a young mother to two-year-old Daniel, joined the Building Bright Futures program over concerns about her child’s speech. She explained that it was difficult for her to understand Daniel, and that she felt he was having trouble learning. Although Kate spent time with him to try and help him learn basic colors, shapes, numbers, and letters, Daniel simply was unable to retain any information. Seeking advice, Kate had him screened by her local school district, but was told that he was fine and wasn’t eligible for developmental preschool.

With the help and guidance of her Parent Educator from Building Bright Futures, working together on parent/child activities in language development, Kate was referred to the Arizona Literacy and Learning Center for another evaluation for Daniel. The results showed that Daniel was scoring 70% below where his speech should’ve been for his age. With the new results in hand, Kate persisted in having another evaluation by her school district, and fortunately, this time Daniel was found eligible for developmental preschool.

After attending six months of developmental preschool, Daniel is now able to count to ten and can recognize at least eight numbers, nineteen letters, knows his shapes and colors, and is beginning to write the letters of his name. He’s also receiving speech therapy each week, and Kate is already seeing amazing improvements. Moreover, Kate and Daniel recently attended a Story Time event through the Building Bright Futures Group Connections group, where for the first time, Daniel was engaged, interacted, and asked questions – something he didn't do before.

Kate decided not to ignore her concerns and with determination and persistence, was able to receive the vital services she needed for Daniel to learn, grow, and succeed!

Kate and Daniel’s story wouldn’t be possible without the partnerships with special friends of Child & Family Resources, like you, who are making this life-changing work possible every day. Your ongoing support is making life better for thousands of Arizona children and families every year. On behalf of Kate, Daniel, and all of us at Child & Family Resources, a heartfelt thank you!