We have been inspired by the Bi Brigade to establish a visible and active bisexual community here in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Do you have any advice or experiences to share from creating the Bi Brigade? We are in the process of reaching out to local queer community organizations to explore spaces for a bi conversation group.
How has being engaged with the bi community impacted you personally? What encouragement would you give to those who may be unsure of ‘taking the leap’ to engage with the bi community?
-Alix, Ayla & Mike (Totally cool to use our names as is!)
Sarah, 27, Public Health:
I'm so glad that you are going to work to establish a bi community in Halifax! I personally have felt incredibly supported through the bi community here in Portland. It's been awesome meeting new people from all walks of life and seeing the incredible diversity within the bi community. I've met new friends, heard stories of heartbreak, love, confusion, excitement, and growth; It's been incredibly rewarding. I personally feel that the time and effort that I've put forth into engaging and developing the bi community here has been outweighed over and over again by the rewards. I've also really loved meeting other members of the LGBTQ+ community and getting involved in national events like Pride. This all comes at a historic time in the US where marriage equality and human rights for LGBTQ people are at a tipping point. It makes it feel even more important for our community to be active, involved and visible. I'm sure there are similar reasons in Nova Scotia to develop community and provide others a resource and safe space. I'm sure that you all will find that there are more people than you expect who identify as bi or pan (or both!) and would love the chance to be involved in a community that's specific to them. I wish you well!
Lynnette, 57, Host of The Bi Cast:
Books and brochures! The Bisexual Resource Center's newest brochure includes short synopses of the classic bi books you should have on your shelf. Perfect resource for an LGBT center or a bi support group. For tips on starting your own bi support group, The BRC has you covered!
Cameron, 27, Bisexual Community Organizer:
I am inspired that you are inspired by Bi Brigade. I am inspired that a 20 year old from Montreal inspired us to create a video that shares a glimpse of our community, and that a group of people in Nova Scotia watched that video and became inspired to create their own community. Every single day I am more and more inspired by the power of community and every individual involved.
Yesterday I met a 45 year old psychologist, and when she found out that I was a bisexual community organizer she opened up to me about her own bisexuality. We talked for hours and for the first time in her life, she had somebody to talk to about an arena of her life that, even as a psychologist, she felt she had to keep to herself. Bisexuals feel burdened to experience their sexual identity in solitude, and there is absolutely no good reason for that. What made this experience most rewarding was informing her of the various events and resources in our area that are bisexual specific, none of which would exist without a few dedicated individuals who are committed to building and sustaining bi community. Keep up the amazing work.
Stephanie, 28, Grad Student:
My advice would be to leverage local businesses and non-profits. Many of our discussion group attendees found out about our group via Google and Q Center's Calendar. We also host Bi Bar at Crush, a local queer/ally bar, which we publicize via Facebook and MailChimp.
As far as how the group has impacted me personally, it's been huge. I have new, incredible friends who understand me in ways my monosexual friends often couldn't. The encouragement I have to offer is that you are already three people! You're off to a great start.