By Turner Gold
The Counseling and Psychological Services department of Humboldt State University have taken another step towards their goal of providing support for all students with a reboot of the Rainbow Discussion Group on campus after its brief hiatus. The group is to serve as a safe, non-judgmental space for any queer identifying or questioning students who are seeking support from others in similar situations.
“I think the relaxed nature and feeling of being part of a community is what draws students in,” said Kimberly Alman, group facilitator. “It’s not a formal psychotherapy session, but rather a place to gather support from one another.”
The RDG is built on the foundation of casual interaction with one another, with particular emphasis on avoiding the stiff and uncomfortable methods that other support groups might fall victim to.
“We start off with introductions,” Alman said. “We’ll going around and introduce ourselves with our name, major, a feeling of the day, and anything else they feel like sharing. It helps to get everyone acquainted with one another right off the bat and provides a sense of intimacy, even for those sitting in on their very first meeting.”
RDG has also gathered support from other LGBT clubs and services on campus, with members and officers promoting and attending the services.
“There are a lot of great organizations on campus that offer assistance to students, but the RDG is different,” said Shawn Simon, co-president of the Queer Student Union. “Instead of having to meet with one figure to being referenced to a resource, members of the queer community can come together to show each other love in their lives, something that is needed by everyone!”
The group meets every Thursday from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. in NHE Room 115. There is no appointment or sign up process required in order to become a member of the discussion.
“You never know who will be there or who you’ll meet,” Alman said. “You can just bring your lunch and hang out with others who might be struggling with similar issues.”