ANKORS office hires new staff

There is a fresh face in the East Kootenay ANKORS office in Cranbrook.
Kris Dickeson has taken over as coordinator of Safe Spaces EK. This successful program has been running in the Kootenays for three years and Dickeson says her goal is to maintain its upward momentum.
“I am honoured to take over this position and want to continue to reach out to gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, two-spirited, intersexed, queer and questioning youth (GLB3TIQQ),” said Dickeson.
“The massive barriers these youth face need to come down,” Dickeson continued.
“This will only happen with more understanding, acceptance and support which can start with their neighbours. I feel these issues are much harder to deal with as these youth are in rural areas, where the resources offered in cities aren’t available.”
The Safe Spaces Program provides support and services for GLB3TIQQ youth throughout the East Kootenay. The program works with service providers and educational professionals to obtain information and support services by raising awareness of challenges faced by sexual and gender diverse individuals.
One important mandate is to be able to educate local citizens about homophobia and its harmful effects on a community as a whole. The Public Service Commission of Canada funds the Safe Spaces Program.
Safe Spaces is holding several public forums around the Kootenays in late January.
These sessions will include a keynote speaker and panels of local experts who will discuss such topics as date rape drugs, same sex relationship violence, health services for non-heterosexual population, homelessness for GLB3TIQQ youth, suicide and substance abuse.
Dickeson comes from a long background in media and has worked throughout B.C. and Saskatchewan in radio.
Since returning to Cranbrook (her hometown) in 2001, Dickeson has kept busy as a freelance journalist.