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Hetrick-Martin Institute Hosts Gender Conference East

Wednesday Nov 9, 2016

On November 11-12, Hetrick-Martin Institute will host a two-day convening, Gender Conference East, which provides a safe and supportive space dedicated to the needs of children and youth across the gender spectrum, as well as their families and the professionals working with them.

HMI is the nation's oldest and largest organization serving LGBTQ youth. They are hosting the conference in partnership with The Gender and Family Project of The Ackerman Institute for the Family, PFLAG-Howard County, and PFLAG-NYC. The weekend kicks off with a Friday evening Meet & Greet, sponsored by Lambda Legal.

The conference will feature a wide range of programming, such as:

  • A professional symposium in legal, health care, mental health, schools, intersectionality, faith, legal, multi-disciplinary and research
  • How to advocate for your children
  • A separate track for elementary, middle, high school and young adults

    This event is open to accepting and supportive families, caregivers, and caregiving professionals. There are specific spaces and activities designed for children and youth, including:

  • For children in kindergarten through elementary school, it'll be a day of fun and games, where they are free to express themselves as themselves, play and meet other kids whose gender expression is out of the box. 
  • For middle school-aged youth, it's a mix of fun, social time, new friends and an opportunity to learn and become more empowered to navigate their own journey. 
  • For youth in high school, there will be space to learn, meet one another, and have fun. This year, we have combined our high school and young adult programming to enhance participant's experience and access to a variety of engaging workshops and activities. 
  • Onsite daycare will be provided for children under five.

    Friday, November 11 will feature a Professional Symposium, featuring programming in legal, health care, mental health, schools, intersectionality, faith, legal, multi-disciplinary and research. Join us and sharpen your knowledge or get an introduction on how to better serve gender-expansive youth and their families.

    Saturday, November 12 is about Family and Loved Ones, featuring programming for families and loved ones that will empower you to advocate for your children. Young adults are welcome to join us here, where they will find support and information to empower them on their journeys. A separate track is available on Sunday for Children & Youth, featuring specific programming for elementary, middle, high school and young adults, including supportive spaces where they can be themselves and meet kindred spirits.

    Hetrick-Martin Institute believes all young people, regardless of sexual orientation or identity, deserve a safe and supportive environment in which to achieve their full potential. Hetrick-Martin creates this environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth between the ages of 13 and 24 and their families.

    Through a comprehensive package of direct services and referrals, Hetrick-Martin seeks to foster healthy youth development. Hetrick-Martin's staff promotes excellence in the delivery of youth services and uses its expertise to create innovative programs that other organizations may use as models?

    We want everyone who wants to attend to be able to attend, regardless of ability to pay. Apply for a scholarship at

    Gender Conference East will occur on Friday, November 11 from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. and Saturday, November 12 from 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. at The DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 128 Frontage Road, Newark Airport, New Jersey.

    For information, email or visit


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