Allyance in Nebraska Feb 10, 2024

On February 10, Dr. Holt presented over zoom to Allyance members in Nebraska about the importance of advocacy for LGBTQ+ Young People. Presentation highlights included the discussion of disparities that impact LGBTQ+ rural people, real-life examples of the experiences of rural queer young people, Dr. Holt’s research results on the impact of rural geography on sexual identity, and steps on how to be an advocate for queer people.

The presentation was followed by a Q & A session.

Audience written feedback

What I Learned/Overall Comments:

1. Thank you Dr. Holt for sharing your personal story! Research on rural communities with queer youth is important, and I loved to see some separation for trans people in the percentages as well.

2. I have a trans granddaughter, and I will always love her. It’s important to advocate for her and her partner!

3. Statistics on suicide and importance of support and acceptance.

4. Very well done presentation. Was very interested in the trans statistics.

5. Having someone in my family who is bisexual, few of the survey results came as a surprise to me.

6. I am always curious how we as clergy can get out of the way and let community lead a faith community they would want.

7. I learned that there are insanely high rates of suicide attempts among people in the LGBTQIA+ community (I never realized how many people tried to commit suicide). The other thing that made me surprised was how many churches showed so much hate towards members of the LGBTQ+ community. It’s disgusting. Thank you for all that you do and helping educate everyone.

8. I found the connection between geography and levels of support, etc, very interesting. I have worked in the public school system and have witnessed resistance to supporting LGBTQIA+ students by using preferred pronouns and taking them seriously. Thank you for your work in supporting our youth.

9. Rural LGBTQ+ youth are STILL struggling in 2024. Church communities NEED to step up their game in supporting LGBTQ+ people; my fear is they don’t know HOW, or WHAT to do to achieve this.

How This Presentation Impacted Me and/or My Advocacy:

1. As someone from a rural community, it’s nice to see that there is some attention brought to queer people in those communities. You helped me to see that any advocacy work, like being a part of the Allyance group, can be very beneficial for many people of different age groups or geographic locations.

2. Will help me always advocate for the LGBTQ (gay) community – which I feel I have done.

3. Improved my knowledge.

4. Opens my mind and heart

5. N/A

6. I am a pastor and an ally. I am in a city where churches try to be allies. I am wondering how I can help my rural clergy colleagues create a more welcoming culture. (This presentation encouraged me to look at my rural neighborhood.)

7. This has given me more inspiration to speak out for my community because it really can save lives. Thank you once again, seriously.

8. Reinforced the need to be available and reach out to youth struggling with sexual identity.

9. Gave me ways to/things to say to questioning youth.