Visibility like never before.
When I was in school for Social Work (yeah social workers!), I took several research classes. For Social Workers, math and mathy-stuff is not why we go into the work. We want to help people, not do statistics. But in order to get a diploma, we have to take these research classes. I am so glad I did.
My area of study was, and still is, LGBTQ health. Only when I was in school, there was very little information on the LGBT communities. In fact, I really struggled to find the data to write my research papers. It was in this struggle that I learned the value in research.
If we don’t know what a community needs, then how can we serve? And, then there is the bigger issue of funding. If we aren’t properly identifying a community, then we aren’t showing need or that there is a problem. If we aren’t show there is a problem, then funding sources aren’t allocated to support our community. Data is important.
Large national population surveys historically do not ask questions about sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI). Therefore, our communities are not represented. We were invisible in the research. Until now. Show Me YOU is historic. For the first time in Missouri history, we have information on our people, and we intend to use it to improve the quality of lives for LGBTQ Missourians.
The information learned from Show Me YOU: An LGBTQ Health and Wellness Questionnaire is so powerful. We had over 3,500 LGBTQ Missourians participate in this survey. The information learned about YOU is going to help us and other Missouri community organizations serve YOU.
Thank you for SHOWing up MO, and for using your voice to increase visibility for our communities.