March 2021
Our Teach Pride, Reach Wide Educator Toolkit has Launched!
Last Thursday, the youth program launched our new “Teach Pride, Reach Wide” toolkit for Marin educators. This toolkit provides resources and guidance that teachers can use to make their classrooms more inclusive and supportive for queer and trans students. The launch featured our middle school and high school student leaders sharing stories of hostility and lack of support, as well as their own resilience! You can view the toolkit, and all of the accompanying resources at bit.ly/teachpridetoolkit. If you’d like to watch the student panel, click here: Recording of the Launch Workshop

Our next steps for educators’ resources will be to zero in on the needs of elementary schools -- both in integrating LGBTQ+ issues into their classrooms, as well as supporting parents to understand the necessity of doing so! If you’re connected to schools or educators in Marin, have kids in school, or are a young person who wants to get involved in this work, reach out to Fel at agrelius@thespahrcenter.org! 
Transgender Day of Visibility is March 31st
March 31st is International Transgender Day of Visiblity, which is a day dedicated to celebrating the trans community and all of its accomplishments. This year, The Spahr Center has begun the process of expanding our connection to the trans community in Marin County, and pushing for Marin County to better show up for the trans people who live here. We have re-launched our Trans Community Group, which meets on Tuesday evenings, begun to identify culturally competent providers of services to trans people in the county, and stepped up planning to open a trans wellness resource, as well. 

This month, we are also urging Town Councils across Marin to adopt a resolution honoring March 31st as Transgender Day of Visibility! San Rafael has already issued a proclamation, thanks to Councilmember Rachel Kertz. A resolution is on the agenda in Fairfax on March 17, thanks to Councilmember Chance Cutrano, in San Anselmo on March 23rd, thanks to Councilmember Alexis Fineman. The Board of Supervisors will also be considering the resolution on March 23rd, thanks to Supervisor Rodoni. Please tune in to watch the resolution pass and show your support in public comment if you live in these towns! If you’re interested in advocating for your town to adopt this resolution, send Fel or Dana an email and we will send you the draft resolution for your town!
Our Talent Show is Almost Here!
At showtime, click the button below to join the Zoom meeting:
For more information, contact Jerry Schmitz at jschm117@aol.com
Vaccine News
The Spahr Center continues to encourage our clients and supporters to be vaccinated against Covid-19, and is here to support individuals to register for vaccination appointments, if needed. 

The best source for local information about Covid – and access to the vaccine – continues to be www.coronavirus.marinhhs.org. Do take a look at the rich set of resources available there! By clicking on https://coronavirus.marinhhs.org/vaccine/status, it is possible to see exactly where the vaccine is available, and to schedule appointments. 

IMPORTANT: For those without access to the internet, this is the Marin County phone number to call for information and to schedule vaccination appointments: 833-641-1988. Please share this number with others you think might find it helpful!

Finally, another good resource for information about the vaccine and its availability can be found at https://myturn.ca.gov/
Forging Ahead
The Spahr Center has now held two of three planned sessions of Forging Ahead: A Gathering for People Living with HIV in Marin. This Zoom-based retreat was created to increase community among HIV-positive people, share vital information about HIV care and treatment, and purely to have fun.

The two sessions on February 13 and March 6 have included relaxation exercises, cooking classes with Spahr’s own chef Andy Fyne, education about Covid and people with HIV, and education about advances in HIV treatment and research into a cure. Participants are also participating in a Storytelling Project to archive recordings of the experiences of Marin’s people living with HIV for educational and historical purposes.

The last session of Forging Ahead will be held on Saturday, March 27 from 11:00 to 1:00. Additional registrants are welcome to join by emailing lgallen@thespahrcenter.org.  

Our deep thanks to Gilead Sciences and Kaiser Permanente for their support of this great event.
Advocacy Day Report Back
Spahr Works to Prevent Opioid Overdoses
As part of The Spahr Center’s long-running Syringe Access Program, which furnishes sterile syringes to people who inject drugs in order to prevent HIV and hepatitis C, we now provide a constellation of services to address the health needs of our clients. This includes distributing Narcan, an inhaled medication that prevents opioid overdoses. We have saved many lives through this program.

The Spahr Center has recently partnered with the Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drugs (ATOD) subcommittee of the Marin County Youth Commission to train high school students from all over Marin County on how to prevent and treat opioid overdoses. Each high schooler received a Zoom training on how to prevent overdoses, and how to use Narcan. The students then went on to translate this presentation into Spanish, create their own slides and present it over Zoom to various organizations. The Spahr Center hosted a parking lot Narcan handout for ATOD, and the students handed out kits. 

We are very excited about this opportunity to work with Marin’s youth to address overdoses and empower our community to prevent further loss of life due to the opioid crisis.