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May 5, 2022

Idaho Gives: Local MMIP Cases

Idaho Gives Week is an annual opportunity for communities to enrich nonprofits across the state. Last year, the Idaho Coalition utilized this week for mutual aid donations to Jane Doe (a 19-year-old survivor who was sexually assaulted by Idaho legislator Aaron von Ehlinger during her volunteer internship at the Capitol building). Our collected donations supported Jane Doe – and survivors across the state – to heal from assault, the traumatic impact of accountability processes, and awareness efforts in Idaho. As her case continues to unfold, we continue to witness the impacts of community support & generous solidarity efforts. To build from this support & solidarity, it is important to select another Idaho Gives focus to uplift survivors & people who are acutely impacted by gender violence in our state.

This year, the Idaho Coalition is passing forward all donations to local survivors & family members impacted by cases of MMIP (Missing and Murdered Indigenous People). We are boldly committed to a world beyond MMIP, and we are re-imagining what is possible with beloved community as we imagine a future where all Idahoans can heal, thrive, and be safe. By donating to us through Idaho Gives Week, community members are providing: prevention efforts to address MMIP and forms of gender violence, the direct financial support for Indigenous survivors or families experiencing systems of oppression (such as money for counseling, stipends to lessen the burden of working with justice systems, funeral costs, etc).

Although we center & support Indigenous people year-round, we especially want you all engaged in this effort to share support for Idaho’s MMIP cases. Today, May 5th, is the National Awareness Day for MMIP, and it is also the final day of Idaho Gives fundraising. Beyond wearing red today, as is custom for MMIP Awareness Day, we urge you to consider sharing information about our Idaho Gives fundraising. To learn more about our Idaho Gives focus for this year, and to make a donation, click here.

Publishing Youth Poets

youth standing in front of brick wall for Teen Dating Violence Awareness & Prevention Month

Students from middle schools/junior highs and high schools across the state participated in our 13th Annual Idaho Youth Writing Challenge, and we recently announced this year’s published authors! We invite you to read more about the visions of these local students who imagine – in detail – a future of being in right relationship with each other.

The Idaho Coalition chose “In Right Relationship” as this year’s Writing Challenge theme, and we believe this focus can allow us all to co-create a future where we thrive together. Being in right relationship means feeling like you have space to grow and learn about yourself and each other while still respecting boundaries without the fear of judgment. In 100 words or less, Idaho students wrote about fostering a culture of meaningful relationships, sharing what it means to recognize the healthiest option(s) for all parties – even if it means breaking up or having difficult conversations. And they did incredibly! Some of the youth’s prompts include caring for each other, authenticity, consent, shared power, and moving through conflict.

To say the least, it wasn’t easy to choose this year’s top 20 In Right Relationship Awardees or which authors would get published amongst the 1,200+ submissions we received. We extend deep gratitude to Malia Collins, former Idaho Writer in Residence, for selecting awardees, as well as Idaho’s beloved educators for helping us connect with the vibrant youth writers who made this Writing Challenge possible. The Idaho Coalition is mailing poetry books to each of the many published authors and the top 20 awardees, their teachers, and their school libraries. We hope that you can read a nearby copy of this year’s book and/or use this link to find 2022’s published list of poets in your community.

Mental Health Awareness Month

Alok, a brown-skin person wearing bright colors, is smiling in front of a white background

For last year’s annual report, the Idaho Coalition wrote, “We are living in a time of prolonged chaos – COVID-19 and the unfathomable loss of life, threats to our democracy, increased gender violence, unceasing mass shootings, the unrelenting state violence against Black communities, governmental threats to women’s bodily autonomy, climate crisis, and more.” Even today, this all seems relevant & applicable to the lives we navigate. It is imperative to continue describing the landscape of our social world so we can move away from harm and oppression, and instead, to move toward restorative thriving – especially as we enter Mental Health Awareness Month! Why? Because we know that our wellness & health does not take place in a silo away from the pandemic, threatened democracy, gender violence and gun violence, antiBlackness, misogyny, the extraction of Earth, or any of the other social issues we face.

This year, anti-trans legislation has been an increasingly important social issue that we’re facing & fighting. It is imperative to acknowledge the effects of transphobic lawmaking on this year’s social landscape, especially because this transphobia builds upon the other elements of prolonged chaos that we’ve been navigating. As we continue to rise up against the attacks on trans communities, we want to center trans people in our advocacy for Mental Health Awareness Month. The chaos we navigate, including the attacks against gender-expansive people that we’ve watched in this year’s legislation, can contribute to adverse mental health outcomes for all of us. We know this toll is felt acutely by our trans siblings.

The Idaho Coalition recognizes that our state has been a hotspot for anti-trans legislation, and between Idaho’s high mental illness rates & low accessibility to mental health care, we carry a responsibility to uplift trans people, interrupt transphobia, and advocate for a brighter future for all of us to live into through Mental Health Awareness Month. Whether we recognize this month as advocates or as people who are personally impacted by mental health disorders – whether we are cis or trans – we can co-create better mental health for our beloved communities of Idaho. To listen to a relevant clip by Alok Vaid-Menon, click here.

Training & Events

First Annual Latinos Unidos Conference | May 5, 2022

PODER of Idaho takes great pleasure in inviting you to today’s full day conference at the Hispanic Cultural Center. This conference will highlight policy advocacy and analysis specific to Idaho. By catalyzing policy change, the Latinos Unidos Conference works to improve education outcomes, build economic prosperity, showcase the latest redistricting data and maps as they pertain to Latinos, promote immigration policies and strengthen community leadership. 

If you have any questions about the conference, please do not hesitate to contact the Community Outreach Coordinator, Enedelia, by phone at (208) 992-7481 or email at enedelia@poderofidaho.org. Register for the conference by clicking here!


“I Am Not Your Mammy, Superhero, or Imposter” | Podcast Episode

This episode is part of VALOR’s Leadership Moves podcast. Tobi Downing talks about the ways that she, as a Black woman, has navigated the anti-violence movement over the last 3 decades. Listen on Spotify or on Apple Podcasts!


Idaho Advocate Training Series: The Impact of Lack of Safe Housing on Survivors of Domestic Violence | Part 1: Tuesday, May 17, 2022, 12pm MT- 1:30pm MT/ 11am PT- 12:30pm PT| Part 2: Wednesday, May 18, 2022, 11am MT-12:00pm MT- 10am PT- 11pm PT

In this two-part series, Lavon Morris-Grant, Director of Community Engagement with National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, will discuss the impact of safe and affordable housing on survivors of domestic violence, the ways in which the pandemic has increased barriers for survivors to have access to safe housing and how it has exacerbated the needs of communities marginalized by society. Lavon will also offer strategies to assist survivors in finding and securing affordable housing. Part two of the series will be an Advocate Watercooler Discussion where Idaho advocates will have an opportunity to share successful strategies and work together to form new strategies around housing survivors.

Register here!

For more information contact Kailey at kailey@engagingvoices.org.


Building a Foundation for Prevention | 2-part Podcast Series

This podcast is an excerpt from PreventConnect’s January 2022 web conference “Building a Foundation for Sexual and Intimate Partner Violence Prevention,” where PreventConnect staff tell the story of prevention through metaphors and analogies, without all the technical jargon. View Part 1 of the series here!


What is Systemic Racism?| 8-part Video Series

Race Forward presents, “What Is Systemic Racism?” an 8-part video series that shows how racism shows up in our lives across institutions and society: Wealth Gap, Employment, Housing Discrimination, Government Surveillance, Incarceration, Drug Arrests, Immigration Arrests, Infant Mortality… yes, systemic racism is really a thing. View the series here!

Idaho Coalition Store Materials

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Reminder that shipping for all material orders made by Programs on the Idaho Coalition website store is FREE of cost, please use the below coupon for all orders.

Visit the online store to view current Idaho Coalition materials available for order. For store questions, please contact Amy York.

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