Author Archives: Stonewall Collective Staff

Make Music at Stonewall Youth!

Music workshops and jam time at Stonewall Youth every Monday from 5-8pm!!!!


Making music is an incredible way to heal and express yourself. We will be offering a month of workshops followed up open jam time to any LQBTQQIA person age 21 and under who is interested in participating. We have many guitars, basses, keyboards, drums, mics, pedals, and more fun stuff to experiment on in a safe space. All Stonewall Youth programming is sober.

If you are interested in participating, just show up or get in touch with Ruby at
MARCH 20 – Drums
MARCH 27 – Bass
APRIL 3 – Vocals
April 10 – Guitar/Songwriting (with Erica Freas!)

Music flyer dates final


We’re Making Great Progress on our Quest to Purchase our New Home!

quest days workIn April of 2017, Stonewall Youth is moving into our new home. Finally! Our quest for a new permanent HQ began more than a year ago when our current building was sold. Stonewall Youth and the rest of the tenants have to vacate.

Our search for a new place and a lot of organizational soul-searching led us to the conclusion that we should celebrate our 25th anniversary by BUYING a new place instead of once again locking ourselves into a lease.

After more than a year of insecurity regarding when we’d have to move and where we would move, we signed a Lease to Own contract with the owner of our new building in December of 2016. We hope to sign a purchase agreement by the end of 2017. (See below for a more history on our quest.)

We’re happy and relieved to be finally moving in. Our new HQ is a two-story building (4,400 square feet) conveniently located in downtown Olympia. We’ll be using the first floor for the time being and look forward to expanding to the second floor. In alignment with our policy of confidentiality, we’re keeping the exact location private for now; stay tuned for further information!

The multipurpose building we hope to purchase will be a good investment, allow us to expand no home for homosour programming (including more youth and all-ages workshops, dances, performances, and other events) provide stability to LGBTQ+ youth and to the organization, and give us the opportunity to support emerging ventures.

Our new HQ will also serve some of the needs expressed by the social justice organizations with whom we collaborate:

  • A large room to be used for meetings, performances, youth and all-ages dances, fundraisers and other events.
  • Reasonably priced office space available to allied nonprofits.
  • A computer center for the LGBTQ+ community.
  • An opportunity for individuals and organizations to invest and build equity.our new home sign
  • Hopefully, we’ll also be able to house and collaborate with Olympia’s emerging intergenerational trans and queer center: The PARQC (The People’s Activity and Recreational Queer Center). The PARQC is being created by Tali Abernathy Jones, Ari LaTourette, and other amazing community members and Stonewall Youth volunteers. The PARQC may start out as a program of Stonewall Youth with a mission to offer sanctuary to LGBT+ adults, while centering the most vulnerable members of our community. It will offer a safe and validating space to ensure that our members survive, thrive, and have the resources and training necessary to advocate for themselves and others. We look forward to many intergenerational collaborations!

YOU can participate in creating this community resource!help share donate

  • Donate: You can make a tax-deductible donation at any time for our Capital Campaign at Network for Good.
  • Invest and build your own equity: That’s right, you can own part percentage of our building! A supportive investor has started a Limited Liability Company (Liberation, LLC) to make it easy for community members to invest in the building. Our goal is to build equity for Stonewall Youth as well as for other community members who partner with us. Contact us at for more information.
  • Volunteer: Along with always welcoming volunteers to help us in our day-to-day work, let us know if you would like to join our quest by being part of the team that makes it happen. It takes a village to create a queer youth center!

We’ve already raised more than $60,000 to purchase the building through donations and investments by our supporters.

Along with investments and donations from supporters like you, Stonewall Youth is also securing funds from other sources: grants from private and public sources; a small business loan; crowdfunding; and loans from community members, to be paid back with an attractive interest rate.rainbow Donate Now


Continue reading

Callout for Music Volunteers!

volunteer music flyerStonewall Youth is starting music programming!!!! We need volunteers!

Stonewall now has an expansive collection of drums, guitars, basses, keyboards, and mics! We’ve taken on Queer Rock Camp’s mission to empower youth, build community, and amplify resistance and self expression through music – so far, we have a sweet jam room with a full band’s worth of instruments. Music drop-ins are happening every Monday from 5-6pm, and the jam room is also open every Friday evening during drop-ins for youth to utilize. But, we want more!!!!

My goal is to have a music workshop happening every Monday evening from March 20th through April 24th. I need your help to make this happen.

If you are a musician who would be interested in facilitating a music workshop and music drop-ins/open jam time at Stonewall Youth, please contact Ruby at


-Intro to guitar chords
-How to play Bass 101
-Vocals and Harmonies
-Drum Circle/Basic Drum Beats

Join us in learning how to plan a protest/action – strategy, tactics, art, media, and more – FEB 17 6:30-8pm!

No automatic alt text available.
This is a FREE workshop exclusively for LGBTQ+ youth ages 21 and under!!!

The workshop on Friday, Feb. 17 at 6:30pm to 8pm is the third in a series of workshops. The last workshops discussed strategic planning (picking a target, researching and scouting, how to best utilize your resources), tactics, roles, knowing your rights in the context of organizing and participating in a direct action.

A direct action takes many forms but ultimately is a direct confrontation to the root causes of oppression/marginalization.

Feast with Us!

Community Potluck flyer

Join Stonewall Youth at our monthly intergenerational Community Potluck on Saturday, January at 6 – 9pm at the CoLab (317 4th Ave E in downtown Olympia)

LGBTQ+ folks and respectful allies of all ages are welcome.

Stonewall Youth will provide some yummy main course dishes as well as a few sides, and you’re encouraged to bring something tasty to share. This is a great time to show off that amazing dish you make, or to experiment with cooking fabulous new recipes!

AND don’t stress if you’re not able to bring anything or only have time to sprint into the store to pick up chips & dip or some non-alcoholic beverages to share! The important thing is that you show up and feast in community with us. No alcohol, please.

We’ll be asking for donations to cover our costs. We’re counting on folks with financial resources to help cover the costs of providing food to youth and other folks in our community who are struggling financially. Any additional income will be applied to the costs of providing our many regular programs for LGBTQ+ youth.

We’ll have some conversation starters, board games and playing cards available for those who like such things.danger room logo

This month’s potluck is sponsored by our friends at Danger Room Comics. Thanks for making Olympia a better and more comic-filled place, Danger Room!

Stonewall Youth is committed to making these monthly potlucks a safer place for all in our community, particularly youth, LGBTQ+ folks, people of color, low-income folks, and elders. Bring your respect!  See after the break for our Safer Space guidelines.

Continue reading

January Calendar of Events!


Monday Jan. 16 – meet at Stonewall at 11:45am to go to the MLK Day March for Justice! at POWER

Wednesday Jan. 18 – meet at Stonewall at 3pm to go to Fabian Romero’s talk on Continuing the Work We’ve Done, hosted by Evergreen’s Trans & Queer Center at the Evergreen Longhouse

Friday Jan. 20 – meet at Stonewall at 8:45am to go to the youth-led Fight For Our Future Inauguration Day Rally at the Capitol. Or, meet us there!

Thursday Jan. 26 – meet at Stonewall at 3pm to go to the Know Your Rights workshop at Evergreen’s Trans & Queer Center

Saturday Jan. 28 – Stonewall Youth’s second monthly Community Potluck – see you there <3

Dear Fabulous Supporter of Stonewall Youth,

For 25 years, Stonewall Youth has provided the only safe, reliable, and intentional space for many LGBTQ+ youth in our community.  We provide a safe, sober, and supportive space for LGBTQ+ youth to talk about their experience, make friends, make art and music, build job and personal skills, and to get the support, referrals, knowledge, confidence, and mentorship that assist them to successfully navigate the struggles they face.  

This year of struggle and beauty has been a groundbreaking one for Stonewall Youth.  Here are some highlights of what we did this year:

Fighting for our rights and safety: This year began with a hateful clamor of anti-trans protests, cropped-StoneallTransRally.jpglegislation and ballot initiatives that would have blocked trans youth and adults from using bathrooms, locker rooms and other facilities appropriate to their gender identity.  Youth and adult allies wrote letters to and met with legislators, testified in hearings, engaged in rallies and protests, and supported each other through these sometimes harrowing experiences. We collaborated with an array of statewide and local organizations to narrowly defeat all of the dangerous proposals.

Youth Leadership: We have a staff collective of two youth and two adults. Lili and Ruby, our two youth Co-Directors who were hired at the end of 2015, led Stonewall into a new era of youth leadership this year. They led regular programs, created and led many new projects, provided amazing support and inspiration to youth, and were basically extraordinary.  We also recently hired four new members of our youth Speakers Bureau Collective, and started a new youth paid Fellowship program for high school age youth.

So Many Expansions:  We expanded our drop-in hours to three days a week to accommodate an increase in youth participants. Almost 400 youth participated in our support groups, art and writing workshops, drop-ins, dances, and other programs! New programs included music programming (we inherited a large collection of musical instruments), 10-week workshops for spoken work and poetry, a series of youth open mics, expanded outreach to rural areas,  and our new monthly all-ages Community Potlucks.

We just signed a “Lease to Own” agreement on a downtown building!  Among many other fabulous things, the building will serve as the Stonewall Youth center as well as the all-ages Queer Center.

We did all that and much more on a shoestring budget of less than $100,000  that stretches us too thin. The need for our programs is great.  

LGBTQ+ youth are significantly more likely than their peers to experience violence, bullying, and to attempt suicide. They are often unable to access basic services like culturally competent healthcare, teachers or safe bathrooms.  The day-to-day injustices experienced by LGBTQ+ youth – particularly youth of color — can lead to depression, high drop out rates, and serious health issues.  Did you know that over 40% of homeless youth are LGBTQ+? LGBTQ+ youth also face barriers to accessing social services, and in obtaining safety in housing, foster care or juvenile justice.

We depend on community members like YOU to support our critical work.  Please send us a special year-end tax deductible gift of $20, $50 or $100 (or even more!)

Youth and their adult allies at Stonewall Youth recognize that the recent election of Donald Trump and the fact that he’s appointing many well-known bigots to positions of power means that even the small gains in civil rights and healthcare made by LGBTQ+ people in the past decade are in danger, particular for people of color, trans people and immigrants.

We are also gearing up for another wave of anti-trans hate and legislation in Washington State. Last year’s anti-trans bill lost by only one (1!) vote.  A new hateful bill has been pre-filed that would limit transgender people’s access to public restrooms and other gender-segregated facilities by prohibiting them from using the restroom consistent with who they are if they are “preoperative, nonoperative, or otherwise have genitalia of a different gender from that for which the facility is segregated.” (Yep, that’s an actual quote from the proposed legislation.)

Even if no drastic changes are made in state and federal law, LGBTQ+ youth are experiencing the real and present danger of increased violence, negative attention, insecurity about the ongoing availability of health care, and increased bigotry.  They need Stonewall Youth.

DONATE NOW to help LGBTQ+ youth stand up for their rights and to get the support needed to survive these hazardous times.  

Your gift of $15 will buy a monthly bus pass for a low-income youth (under 18).

$25 will provide Old School pizza for 25 youth at drop-ins (thanks to the discount that Old School graciously gives us!)

$50 will pay for school supplies for two low-income youth or two bus passes for youth over age 18

$80 will cover a worth of stipends to low-income youth Support Group facilitators

$100 will provide a stipend for a youth Fellow or two discounted therapy sessions for a youth or cover the expenses for one youth to attend our weekend Glitter Camp

$300 will provide art supplies for a 10-week program or pay for a training for our youth co-directors

$400 will cover the food and other expenses for a youth dance and open mic

$1,000 will cover  our rent and utilities for a month!

In these troubled times, we draw strength from the actions of the resistors of hate and oppression, like the indigenous people and allies who held the ground at Standing Rock.  Or by the actions of the cast of “Hamilton, An American Musical” when  Vice President Elect Mike Pence recently attended the award-winning Broadway hit.   When the cast assembled onstage for the curtain call, actor Brandon Victor Dixon said this to Pence on behalf of the multiracial, multicultural, queer and straight cast:

“We truly thank you for joining us.  We, sir, are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our values, our children, or our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights.  We truly hope that this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and to work on behalf of all of us, ALL OF US.”

We applaud this instance of speaking truth to power. At Stonewall Youth, we resist hate and its terrible consequences by building a supportive community, speaking truth to power, and joining with our allies to create social change.  The love & support we receive from our community makes our work possible!


In Solidarity,

Ruby Harrison-Clay & Bryn Houghton, Co-Directors


Audre Lorde caringWe’re hosting a free self defense training on Friday, Dec. 2 at 5:30pm at the CoLab at 317 4th Ave E in Olympia. Invite any and all youth who could benefit from this workshop. This is a safe space for queer youth. This workshop is aimed to empower through self defense tactics as a form of self care. Join us!