Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Last Thursday at Gilt Club

It's that time again; time to grab some friends and head down to Gilt Club this Thursday. Enjoy dinner and support p:ear. I'm thinking of trying the Wild boar poppers (which kind of sound like a disco move), or the "Quail in a Jar" (curious as to how they get the quail in the jar).

Monday, February 21, 2011

The impact of Oregon non-profits

A couple of interesting stats on the impact non-profits have on Oregon's economy from last Sunday's Oregonian:
  • 33 percent of Oregonians contribute their time or money to a nonprofit, one of the highest rates in the country
  • Oregon's 22,715 registered nonprofits employ more than 160,000 Oregonians, accounting for 12 percent of private-sector jobs in the state

Friday, February 18, 2011

Volunteer Training, March 5th

Interested in volunteering or teaching a class at p:ear? Contact joy@pearmentor.org for information on the March 5th volunteer training at p:ear. Be part of the difference in these young peoples' lives! Volunteer at p:ear!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

"Crack Alley"?

Last week the Portland Tribune published an article citing the growing drug problems in Old Town/Chinatown, terming the corner of NW 6th and Flanders "the center of 'Crack Alley'." Does that location sound familiar? While p:ear was absent from the article, it is worth noting that we are one of the few business and buildings open throughout the day and the presence of drugs on our corner has been detrimental both to our youth, some of whom are dealing with addiction issues, and our programs. While coming to work at the p:ear barista school coffee cart early in the morning, our baristas have had to chase away drug dealers congregating new the cart, and foot traffic along NW Flanders has decreased along with potential business for the coffee cart. While Executive Director Beth Burns does not endorse re-instating the Drug Free Zone in Old Town (see Sisters of the Road's Chani Geigle-Teller's comments in the article for reason why), p:ear urges city and neighborhood leaders to work together to address these issues in a safe and respectful way for all the businesses, social service organizations and inhabitants of Old Town.

Monday, February 14, 2011

In face of discrimination, a generous gift from Seth Stambaugh

Last fall, Seth Stambaugh was dismissed from his student teaching position in the Beaverton school district for following interaction:
The class had been working on a journal activity when a student asked Stambaugh if he was married. Stambaugh replied that he wasn’t, and when the student asked him why, he replied that it was not legal in Oregon, because he would choose to marry another man. A fellow student overheard the conversation and that student’s parent contacted Sexton Mountain Principal Don Martin, who in turn contacted the district to ask for Stambaugh’s removal from the school. The official cause given for the dismissal was not that Stambaugh came out to his class, but that his remarks regarding the legality of gay marriage were inappropriate and unprofessional in the classroom setting.
Local attorney Lake Perriguey (and p:ear supporter) helped get Stambaugh reinstated and worked with the Beaverton school district to update their equal rights policies to include the phrases "gender identity" and "gender expression." Stambough is also donating a portion of the settlement with the Beaverton school district to p:ear, a very generous and appreciated gesture. "We are deeply touched by Seth's broad civic thinking," said program director Pippa Arend, "and this donation supports the non-discriminatory, open and safe atmosphere that p:ear has always offered for youth."

Thursday, February 10, 2011

All you need is love

Love Letters by Chris Haberman and Teresa Garber
If you're looking for something romantic to do this weekend, check out "Portland Love Show," at Gallery Homeland. We'll be there to support p:ear donors Chris Haberman and Paul Middendorf at the free opening party this Saturday, February 12th.

Gallery Homeland 2505 SE 11th Ave., Portland, OR 97202

P.S. It's also a food drive for the Oregon Food Bank, so be sure to bring a can, box or two!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

How do we love thee? Let p:ear count the ways

Project Valentine cards at p:ear. So here's a big hug o'love going out to all our supporters - thank you! xoxo, p:ear

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Without p:ear... Youth tell what p:ear means to them

A snippet from our February newsletter. Are you signed up?
"Without p:ear, I would not have a great place to read, make art and generally socialize with great, like-minded artists."
"Without p:ear, I would be without my family. There wouldn't be anyone to engage, encourage or to support me..."
"Without p:ear, I would not have been able to get the courage or change to get my first job."
"Without p:ear, I would die."
Help support p:ear's innovate and crucial work with these young people. Donate at pearmentor.org

Monday, February 7, 2011

Congrats to holiday winners!

This is the last - last! - piece of holiday news. Promise! 

Congratulations to Lake Perriguey, the winner of a free venue rental at p:ear and to Bryne Lovell, winner of four tickets to p:earblossoms 2011! Contact pippa@pearmentor.org to claim your goodies. 

And remember, all $100+ donors from holiday 2010 are invited to walk to in the Starlight Parade with p:ear staff, youth and Doni the Goat during the 2011 Rose Festival.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Courage and Compassion

A few days ago, a friend passed along this Ted Talks clip along with speaker Brene Brown discussing shame, vulnerability and love, and I was struck by how many of her themes fit in with the work we do at p:ear. 

A few hours later, a newsletter titled "Addressing the Needs of LGBTQ Youth Experiencing Homelessness" from the U.S. Interagency Council on Homeless arrived in my inbox. Though the statistics from the reports in the newsletter were not surprising, they were still shocking. While only 5% of the youth population is identified as LGBTQ, 40% of the homeless youth population is LGBTQ. Fifty-eight percent of these youth have been sexually assaulted in comparison to 33% of heterosexual homeless youth. And sadder still: 62% of homeless LGBT youth attempt suicide. LGBT youth who are rejected by their families in adolescence are 8.4 times more likely to attempt suicide, than heterosexual youth. And the offerings of help for these LGBTQ kids are almost non-existant as the report notes that"currently no federal programs specifically designed to meet the needs of gay and transgender homeless youth, and there are no federal protections, and few state laws, in place to keep these youth from being discriminated against while accessing federally funded homeless services. 

The stats above are comparable to what we see at p:ear; youth struggling to fit in and find a safe place to be and express themselves without judgment, fear or hate. We also do not use any state or federal funds for our programs. And Dr. Brene's words exhibit the message that Beth, Pippa and Joy have carried to our kids over the past nine years inside of p:ear. 
"You know what? You are imperfect, and you wired for struggle but you are worthy of love and belonging."

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Evolution of Ideas at Waterstone Gallery

This year for Waterstone's annual group show we are giving viewers a chance to see threads of continuity in each artist's work, and how they may have changed or evolved over the years. This exhibition is an opportunity to see into the creative processes of our artistsas there will be one older artwork adjacent to a body of new pieces. The show runs Feb. 2nd through Feb. 27th, with a preview reception on Wednesday, February 2nd.
Waterstone Gallery has a tradition of donating a portion of the sales from their annual group exhibition to a local non-profit charity. This year p:ear will be the recipient of this donation. Thank you, Waterstone for your support of p:ear!
Can't make the Waterstone show? Make a donation to p:ear in honor of the Waterstone Gallery!