As shared by Jennifer Solomon
When our child, Cooper, was about 18 months old, our family began to notice that he navigated more towards feminine clothing. As parents, we wanted what was best for Cooper. We had many questions.
Our family went to YES Institute and we were embraced with open hearts. For the first time, we didn’t feel like we were alone. We found there was a place we can go to and grow together.
Since then, YES Institute has come into Cooper’s school, and provided education for the staff, first-graders and parents. It has helped to set the groundwork for a safe and secure place for all of the children.
Cooper (now 7 years old) shares, “I feel safe. I feel happy. I feel proud. My friends know it’s okay to wear girl things even though I’m a boy.”
It’s amazing what education can do! Cooper is celebrated for his uniqueness.
Youth as young as three years old start using “anti-gay” slurs to taunt and tease others. These harmful behaviors persist through all levels of education—elementary, middle, and high school, and beyond to college and university. YES Institute provides age-appropriate education to students and educators pre-K through university, addressing gender stereotypes and the source of bullying behaviors. Parent groups benefit from our educational dialogues, where they have an opportunity to voice their concerns and be part of designing solutions.