When I was 16, Advocates for Youth saved my life.
I had been outed at my high school. I was scared and uncomfortable with my sexuality. I joined the State Youth Activist program in Colorado (a project of Advocates for Youth and Colorado Youth Matter) hoping to find a supportive community. Five years later, I am still with Advocates for Youth because they gave me, and continue to give me, the space to grow and love myself.
Youth activists like me worked hard for a year. We met with legislators at the state capitol, and testified in committee hearings. Together, we got thousands of Coloradans to contact their elected officials to make sure that legislators understood the importance of comprehensive sex education that includes LGBTQ youth and the issues we face. Ultimately, we won and better sex education was passed.
In many ways, it was Advocates’ passion and dedication to my life as a queer young person of color that kept me here and kept me alive. My courage and confidence grew and I became the activist and leader I am today.
Because of Advocates for Youth, I have gained skills, knowledge, and perspective that have allowed me to succeed not only as an activist in the community, but as a student, as a brother, a son, and a friend.
Advocates for Youth