Innovation Grant winner plans LGBTQ workshop

The St. Louis Jewish Communities Pride Initiative is nearing the end of a year-long marketing/outreach campaign to create a more inclusive St. Louis Jewish community for LGBTQ individuals and their families. Starting last June with St. Louis Pride Fest 2015, the group increased marketing and awareness to bring a larger representation from the Jewish communities to the Pride Festival and Parade. The final component of this initiative will take place on Sunday, May 15, when the group brings in Keshet, a national organization working for the full equality and inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Jews in Jewish life. Keshet will lead a community workshop to increase inclusivity in the Jewish community.

The Community Workshop is open to the community and takes place from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 15 at the Jewish Federation of St. Louis Kopolow Building. Throughout the program, attendees will have the opportunity to attend two out of three 40 minute sessions:

• LGBTQ 101: How to start the conversation, led by Daniel Bahner, Keshet representative

• Gender Diversity and Texts: What does Judaism have to say?

• Meet Your Community: A Panel of diverse LGBTQ Jews and their experiences, moderated by Ed Reggi

During the program, an expo of community organizations will take place in the atrium of the Kopolow Building. Attendees will have the opportunity to pre-order PRIDE shirts, meet local organizations that are supporting the LGBTQ community and mingle with allies.

In addition to the Community Workshop, Keshet will also be leading a special educators session and clergy session on May 15 and May 16, respectively.

This yearlong initiative, culminating in the Keshet workshops, was funded by the Jewish Federation of St. Louis through an Innovation Grant. For more information or to RSVP, contact the St. Louis Jewish Communities Pride Initiative: Amy Pakett, Keshet Coordinator, at [email protected].