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LGBTQ Connection Launches North SF Bay LGBTQ Youth Leadership Initiative:

LGBTQ On The Verge Cohort

The Need: There are unaddressed generational and racial gaps, and an almost complete lack of programs, to meet the needs of LGBTQ people in the North San Francisco Bay Area. To address these gaps, Napa's LGBTQ Connection (with nonprofit parent organization, On The Move), is launching a groundbreaking, intergenerational LGBTQ On The Verge cohort that will: Grow sustainable LGBTQ leadership Develop future potential employees Pioneer an LGBTQ movement across the four North SF Bay Area counties of Solano, Napa, Sonoma and Marin by recruiting young potential leaders that are representative of their disconnected communities. Overview of On The Verge: The mission of On The Verge is to develop and sustain powerful young leaders who create positive impact locally, nationally and globally. By using a process of rigorous coaching and capacity building, On The Verges intergenerational learning community helps these individuals acquire the personal qualities and professional skills they need to carry out their work now and in the future. Established in 2003, On The Verge was created to provide a focused opportunity for motivated young adults in their mid-twenties to early thirties to explore the terrain within which real change can take place. On The Verge directly addresses the requirements for leadership, community, self as well as worldly knowledge, and the strategic communication skills crucial for making an impact in the world. The commitment takes place over a one year period with the intention that this kind of consistent engagement will encourage and sustain the incredible energy and idealism that so many young people have but which can too easily be lost without on-going community interaction and support. The Process: Participant nominations and applications are beginning now, with selection interviews to take place in March 2014. The group will launch with a kick-off retreat in early April 2014. Two to three participants will be chosen from each North Bay county: Solano, Napa, Sonoma and Marin, and are being recruited in partnership with North Bay organizations including: Solano Pride Center, LGBTQ Connection, VOICES Sonoma, Positive Images and Spectrum LGBT Center. The group will co-host Sonoma Countys LGBTQ Pride celebration in June 2014 and, modeled after LGBTQ Connections very successful LGBTQ Napa Community F orums, will convene a North Bay LGBTQ summit in October. Components of the leadership initiative include: Opening and closing retreat weekend Convening N. Bay LGBTQ summit Individual personal/interpersonal/ professional skills coaching Co-hosting Sonoma County Pride celebration Small group work Large group monthly meetings Closing retreat and community performance

Funding: LGBTQ Connection is currently working to secure funding for the LGBTQ On The Verge cohort. To date, a $4,500 sponsorship has been received from AT&T. Additional funding is needed from each participating county (from foundations, donors, businesses or corporations) to co-sponsor this cohort in support of LGBTQ, youth leadership development and developing vibrant community connections.