From Out!Alive to Untoxicated Queers: a journey
OUT! Alive was born in 2007 from a call out to the community from Mental Health and Addictions. No name, mission, or vision - just an idea.
Led by Patrick Daigle, the group assembled community members represen such as The Youth Project , AIDS Coalition of Nova Scotia, prideHealth, Halifax Pride, Alcoholics Anonymous, and Narcotics Anonymous.
From 2007 to 2015, OUT!Alive took an active role in Q community projects involving gambling, crystal meth, Pride events, quitting smoking, and 2SLGBT sensitivity training for staff working within the Addictions Program. It brought the community together to discuss important issues that many were not talking about.
After a 5-year hiatus, we are back with a new team, a new name, a new approach but the same vision and values:
Untoxicated Queers will be organizing a support group and sober events using the Harm Reduction model, that is, the idea that working with people who are doing less addictive behaviours, works better than requiring complete abstinence. We come together to support and help queer folks in Nova Scotia to talk about about problematic substance use and addictive behaviours of all kinds.
Untoxicated Queers believes that informed choices, broader understanding, and health and wellness initiatives can enhance the lives of those in the Rainbow Community who are former and current substance users and/or who are affected by addictive behaviours of all kinds.
Untoxicated Queers is guided by the principles of harm reduction. We believe that knowledge empowers individuals; that with new learning comes freedom and healthier choices. Untoxicated Queers meets people where they are at, without judgment: practicing respect; encouraging diversity; offering and welcoming learning; supporting individual choice, and promoting our community's health.
That is to say, if you're having trouble with addiction, we're here to help you.
Our first online meetup is Saturday, May 9th. We'll pick a topic together and talk about it in a safe, nurturing space. There will also be a social time together once a month: a board game night, a sober dance party, trivia, karaoke.