Photo Credit: 'Sexting' - momius via Dollar Photo Club. Don't graphic via psdgraphicsdotcom.

Curriculum launched for center

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Our VOICE, Buncombe County’s incorporated rape crisis center, announced on Aug. 28 the implementation of Own Who U R, its Teen Tech Safety Project curriculum, in area schools.

The program seeks to educate teens and tweens regarding the unintended consequences of texting sexually explicit photos, also known as “sexting,” and posting sexually explicit photos online. The program also helps teens and tweens to develop strategies to not give into social pressure to sext or engage in cyberbullying, the center’s Executive Director Angelica Wind said in a release.

“Sexting and posting of sexually explicit photos online can have long lasting effects and devastating impacts on all involved,” Wind added. She stated that sexting can impact a teen’s access to higher education and stable employment and can result in criminal charges as it may involve the production and distribution of child pornography.

The curriculum was developed as part of a Women for Women grant through the Western North Carolina Community Foundation which was awarded to the agency in 2013. The launch will celebrate the success of the program, which to date has reached over 2,600 teens to warn them about the dangers of sexting.  The curriculum itself will be available for purchase by other communities and is accompanied by a social media and print campaign targeted to teens. The print campaign is designed to grab the attention of teens and tweens the center is trying to reach.


Youth group hosts celebration

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Youth Outright will hold its “Young Voices 2015” fundraising event on Sept. 17, 8 p.m., at Asheville Jewish Community Center, 236 Charlotte St.

Entertainment will include excerpts from the University of North Carolina-Asheville’s Queer Youth Theatre Project’s “Qtopia.”

Reservations are encouraged. Admission, which includes one raffle ticket, is $30/advance, $35/at the door.

Raffle items include items from theaters, restaurants, jewelry designers and others.


Art show calls for entries

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Our Voice, a rape crisis center, is holding its 14th Annual Art Survivor Show beginning on Nov. 12.

Pieces are being collected for the event from those who are primary or secondary survivors (i.e., siblings, parent, close friend) who were impacted by and from the assault.

Our Voice believes in the healing power of art, organizers said. “Heart Works” features exhibited work from Our Voice clients and others in the community who have been affected by sexual violence.

Entries are due by Oct. 30. More information is available via email.


Youth group launches initiative

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Youth OUTright has announced that it has started its Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) and Schools Outreach program.

This initiative connects LGBT and allied youth in secondary schools and supportive school personnel throughout Western North Carolina (WNC). It began as a pilot project, and was the WNC Gay-Straight Alliance initiative introduced in last year’s academic year, Blue Ridge Now reported. It will provide enhanced visibility for Youth OUTright, while strengthening GSAs, provide programming for GSA meetings, formation of new clubs at schools and more.

Funding is provided by The Palette Fund, Gamma Mu Foundation, Mission Health, The Chaddick Foundation, Wells Fargo and Bank of America.


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Does your organization or special interest group have events or great information to share with our readers? If so, be sure to send in your information to In the upcoming months, we’ll feature one of you in our news notes section in each issue. Are you a part of a Meetup, Yahoo or Google group and do you do something that’s really newsworthy? Do you provide a service for the community or hold fundraisers for worthy causes? Do you educate the public about LGBT issues or concerns? Of course, this is only a sampling of things we are interested in. It’s the aim of these pieces to inform, enlighten and educate our readers about what we’re doing here in the Carolinas to champion LGBT rights, as well as offer resources for those who may be interested in what your group is doing.

Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen was formerly QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director from 2001-2019 when she retired.