Wear We Stand: 2022 Rainbow Grants Recipient

Over the coming weeks we’re continuing to share the 39 stories of our 2022 Rainbow Grants recipients! All of these deserving projects are receiving critical grant funding as a result of your generous donations to Community One Foundation. Read more and support these projects where you can! If you’d like to see more work like this supported in our community, please consider donating to Community One!

FOUNDATION GRANT (available for up to $7,500 and are open to registered charities or groups trusteed by a registered charity)

For four weeks in August 2022, the Wear We Stand project brought together 2SLGBTQIA+ QTBIPOC youth at Toby’s Place in Scarborough to learn how to design and create screen-printed t-shirts as a way of engaging with gender-affirming fashion and self-expression through workshops on radical self-love and social justice equity. 

The Wear We Stand program is a free, hands-on arts series that engages 2SLGBTQ+ youth ages 13-29 living in Southwest Scarborough to explore topics of radical self-love and social equity through screen printing and fashion. Youth engage with community facilitators and gain transferable skills in screen printing t-shirts while learning about the following weekly themes: decolonization and our relationships to Indigenous land; radical self-love and queer affirmations; protecting the land and water; fashion and gender identity and expression. Each workshop structure includes a knowledge-generating workshop, a skill-building screen printing workshop, and the chance to make a t-shirt with the youths’ original designs. Through this project, we hope to reduce social isolation among 2SLGBTQIA+ BIPOC youth in Scarborough, encourage creative expression, providing a safe space for folks to come together, access art materials and art skills, and build community across differences. 

Toby’s Place is a drop-in centre for 2SLGBTQIA+ youth ages 13-29 located in Southwest Scarborough. They are anti-oppressive, anti-racist, anti-colonial, and youth-centered in scope. They offer free skill-building workshops, leadership/volunteer opportunities, nutritious meals, gender-affirming clothing, and harm-reduction supplies. 

Their mission is to reduce social isolation among 2SLGBTQIA+ youth by providing a low barrier, no-cost, safe(r) space for them to gather, make meaningful connections, and learn new skills. Toby’s Place offers weekly workshops on topics such as arts, sexual health, mental health, and social justice advocacy, intentionally facilitated by (mainly) QTBIPOC community members and folks living on the margins. They also offer volunteer opportunities and reference letters for those who request it.