EDUCATING, CONNECTING and SUPPORTING LGBTQ+ FAMILIES

Rainbow Families' Blog

Our blog is focused on sharing knowledge and thoughtful analysis of issues and topics relevant to LGBTQ families and prospective parents.
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  • Wednesday, September 18, 2019 2:28 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Rainbow Families celebrates this development as a much-needed step for our families' equality, acceptance and safety

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    Merriam-Webster added a new definition of the word “they” to its dictionary, declaring the pronoun may be used to refer to a “single person whose gender identity is nonbinary.”

    “They” is a liberating pronoun for many non-binary individuals who identify as genders other than male or female. For many Americans, the use of “they” as a singular pronoun can be ungrammatical and confusing.

    But Merriam-Webster’s announcement, made on Twitter on Tuesday, marked an official stamp of approval on a term that has become increasingly common as non-binary identities become more visible than ever.

    State and city governments, including in the District, California and New York, have begun offering a gender option of “X” on identification cards. Airlines, school districts and colleges nationwide are also allowing alternative gender markers.

    Article by Samantha Schmidt - Washington Post

    Link to full article HERE

  • Friday, August 16, 2019 11:03 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Rainbow Families celebrates Maryland's decision to add LGBTQ+ history to school curriculum.


    "It's powerful," Darren Paul-Vance, Executive Director of Rainbow Families, said. "It's really inspiring to see Maryland get on the right side of this issue."

    See video clip HERE





  • Thursday, June 20, 2019 1:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    DC Moms Blog is a collaborative parenting resource with the voice of over 35 moms in the DMV.   Their goal is to connect moms both online and offline, provide relevant resources for area parents, and host events.

    They encourage LGBTQ+ Moms to participate.  If anyone would like to join their volunteer team of writers as a contributor, Here is a form to complete.   


  • Tuesday, April 16, 2019 4:32 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Bet Mishpachah,  a congregation for gay, lesbian, bisexual, asexual, trans and queer Jews,  families, friends and allies and all who wish to participate in an inclusive, progressive, egalitarian, and mutually supportive community, has a new initiative:   Tot Shabbat, to reach more people with small children.

    They will be holding a Tot Shabbat Friday, April 26 at 6:30 PM before Erev Shabbat services. 

    What:   Pesach Tot Shabbat

    When:   Friday, April 26 at 6:30 PM

    Where:  Foundry UMC, 1500 16th St NW, Washington, DC.

    Rabbi Laurie Green will lead a Seder-themed Tot Shabbat service. There will be stories and songs as we celebrate Shabbat and Pesach!


  • Wednesday, March 13, 2019 2:55 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    This summer, tens of thousands of iD Tech campers will get hands-on with coding, game development, robotics, and design, making unforgettable memories cemented by fun-filled STEM learning experiences on prestigious campuses.

    (Note! Read through to the end for a special Rainbow Families Offer)

    So, what is it that makes us the #1 summer tech program on the planet?

    Since 1999, over 400,000 kids and teens have passed through our programs—making friends, learning new skills, and getting prepared for college, internships, and dream careers. In fact, iD Tech alumni often go on to work at some of the nation’s most iconic companies, like Microsoft, Google, and EA.

    What does all of this mean for your student?

    With iD Tech programs held at nearby locations like American, Georgetown, Howard, Virginia Tech, University of Maryland, and Johns Hopkins, kick-starting your child’s future in STEM has never been more convenient.    

    We can think of hundreds of reasons why your student should attend iD Tech.   But hey, you have a summer to plan, so here are five of our favorite reasons.

    5. Students can start preparing for successful STEM futures.

    Did you know that in the US alone, millions of STEM jobs are going unfilled? Sure, your little one might be years away from thinking about a career, or even college, but when it comes to STEM, there’s no time like the present to plant the seed.

    Why?

    A young mind is free of preconceived notions that can get in the way of wanting to explore something new. Many kids haven’t yet learned to fear failure. Nothing is too challenging.

    Thus, if they can dive into a STEM program now, they will be that much more prepared than their peers when it comes to grabbing one of the many high-paying STEM jobs down the line.

    4. Children will discover that other kids do in fact share their same interests!

    Everything's better with a friend, right? But even if kids aren’t bringing their best buddy to camp this summer, there is always the chance they’ll make some new pals.

    What is the best atmosphere for cultivating such relationships? It almost always starts with being among those who have similar interests.

    In fact, we hear the same thing summer after summer— ”I’ve found my people” or “I’ve found my tribe.” Students at iD Tech have the uncanny ability to bond with their like-minded peers.

    And it’s easy to see why.

    When kids are in school, they can easily find others who like sports thanks to the opportunity to join athletic teams. They can also find fellow math-minded students in their algebra classes or in after-school clubs. But coming across others who also want to learn to code? Or who share an affinity for building Minecraft mods? It’s a bit more difficult.

    Camp, and iD Tech specifically, provides an ideal environment for making new friends. Students sign-up for a specific course in coding, game development, robotics, or design, and are surrounded by other students just as eager to learn this new craft.

    3. Plus, they’ll have the chance to learn something they might not ever come across in everyday schooling.

    When you hear things like “learn” or “prepare for the future” you can’t help but think of school. We get it.

    But, we call it summer camp for a reason. We even go as far as to describe the iD Tech environment as “un-school.” That means guaranteed small classes, personalized learning, and hands-on projects. It also means music blaring, outdoor games and activities, campus exploration, and gaming tournaments during down-time.

    And instead of teachers, there are course instructors who act as mentors—passing along knowledge from their experiences as educators or tech professionals. Many even started out as students at iD Tech and have returned to pay their skills forward to the next generation!

    As is regularly the case, your student might even discover something that inspires and motivates them to keep learning after camp. Meaning, they enter the summer as a consumer of technology – from apps to video games to social media – and leave with the skills and inspiration to become creators and producers of those very same things.

    2. Not to mention free pie! Wait, let us explain...

    In addition to celebrating Pi Day at our main office, we’re also known for our pie-your-instructor days out at camp! Students work hard all week to earn raffle tickets, ultimately leading up to the chance to pie their favorite instructors. Along with gaming tournaments, dress-up days, outdoor fun, and more, pieing is another pillar of our one-of-a-kind camp culture.

    1. And finally, it’s an opportunity to experience the absolute best summer ever.

    Sure, iD Tech is the largest and most trusted camp of its kind. With 50+ cutting-edge courses, the best industry-standard software and hardware, a unique camp culture, and an unmatched lineup of prestigious campus locations, we can’t be topped.

    But at the end of the day, everything we do is centered around providing the ideal environment for that uber-important STEM skill-building we mentioned above. Parents across the nation and around the world agree that we’ve nailed the recipe for the best summer ever!

    And hey, here’s a bonus. Exclusive to Rainbow Family readers, you’ll receive $75 off when you register with code RBOWFAM19 before 8/22/19. Courses sell-out quickly. Get started today at idtech.com or call (888) 709-8324 for personalized course recommendations. Make unlimited updates to your registration up to 3 weeks before your session with no fees.


  • Friday, February 01, 2019 12:31 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The SMYAL Youth Leadership Awards is a scholarship of up to $5,000 open to all out LGBTQ youth leaders entering their first year of college or vocational school.

    Youth must have a GED, or have received their high school diplomas prior to the summer of 2019.

    There are no other GPA or other academic requirements. For more information, or to apply, please go to www.smyal.org/scholarship.  Applications are due by April 15, 2019.

  • Wednesday, January 02, 2019 6:52 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Monthly Update from Michele Zavos:

    "Many people have been asking me what the ramifications are for our community now that Brett Kavanaugh has been appointed to the Supreme Court.  Given Kavanaugh’s ultra conservative legal positions, the easiest answer is that issues previously decided by the Court by 5 to 4 (with Anthony Kennedy casting the winning vote in our favor) will now almost certainly be 5 to 4 with Kavanaugh casting the deciding vote against us.

    Actually, the implications of Kavanaugh's appointment are even more far-reaching. The right wing has already begun to file cases in lower federal courts cases that it hopes will get to the Supreme Court. Chris Johnson, a reporter for the Washington Blade, discussed a number of these cases in a terrific article on October 19, 2018. The information in the article is extremely distressing, noting challenges to anti-discrimination statutes and supporting protections to religious freedoms over LGBT protections.

    At the Supreme Court, Kavanaugh will almost certainly provide the deciding vote to narrow or even overturn previous cases like Obergefell v. Hodges, where the Supreme Court found that marriage equality was required by the U.S. Constitution. Justice Kennedy cast the deciding vote in that case. Now, Brett Kavanaugh will cast the deciding vote in similar cases.

    There are a number of cases out of Texas which will adversely affect our entire community if they reach the Supreme Court. One such case is Pidgeon v. Turner. Petitioners in that case challenged the City of Houston’s provision of benefits to the same-sex spouses of city employees. The original case was decided before Obergefell but rather than dismiss the case, the Texas Supreme Court has allowed the case to continue post-Obergefell. Petitioners’ argument is that Obergefell only requires the issuance of a marriage certificate, it does not require that the rights and responsibilities of marriage be given to same-sex couples on the same basis of opposite-sex couples. I think this is the kind of argument the right wing will make in order to narrow marriage equality almost to the point of extinction."

    Note:  The Rainbow Families Legal Blog posts are submitted by Rainbow Families' member Michele Zavos, and are entirely her opinion.  Michele, a long-time LGBTQ+ advocate, is a partner at Zavos-Juncker law firm, and has fought for LGBTQ+ rights for decades.   She may be reached HERE

  • Monday, December 10, 2018 11:04 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    LISTEN HERE

    No matter how tech savvy you are, your kids likely have you beat. Digital natives see the world in a fundamentally different way than all previous generations. This makes 21st century parenting an unprecedented challenge. Join Marc Groman, an Obama White House tech and privacy adviser, and David Reitman, an adolescent medical doctor, for candid discussions and helpful tips about screen time, social media, sexting, privacy, online gaming, and other challenges facing parents today. Marc and David aren't just experts – they're also married, and raising a teenage son of their own

    On 12/13/18 they publish their 5th episode. It's about cyber bullying and is  particularly relevant for the LGBTQ+ community. If people only choose to listen to one episode, it will be this one! The story is both tragic and inspiring.

  • Sunday, November 25, 2018 8:57 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Separation and divorce is a reality in our community as in the non-LGBTQ world.   However we have some aspects wholly unique to us.   Rainbow Families has begun a networking/support group called DSRF (Divorced and Separated Rainbow Families).  If you are interested in learning more, please email us.

    Here is an interesting article from KT Hawbaker from the Chicago Tribune, Queer Divorce in the time of Pride.  

     


  • Thursday, November 08, 2018 11:57 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Marc Groman and David Reitman have launched a new podcast called Their Own Devices.

    The podcast series is about parenting in the digital age, but takes a unique and entertaining approach to the topic. The target audience is parents and the goal is help families develop a beneficial, healthy, and productive relationship with technology and digital media. The first episode will be released on November 15th.

    Preview Here

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