We’re excited to welcome Michelle Blassou to True Colors United, as our new Program Associate! Michelle comes to True Colors United from a background in tech and research, recently relocating to New York City from Montreal where she studied Geography at McGill University. Michelle will be working out of our NYC office, applying her tech know-how to our Training and Education programs.
We can’t wait to see what Michelle does in her new role! We asked her a few questions to help you get to know her a little better…
Tell us a bit about your life and work prior to joining True Colors United. Whatcha been up to?
Before joining True Colors United, I worked in tech for a public transit app called Transit and as researcher before then. I did my undergrad in Geography at McGill University, where I was interested in how geographical context helps create a fuller picture of historical and present day inequities. In that time, I worked in media, running a community radio show and working for media research lab. Now, I’m excited use my skills to increase the inclusivity of service providers for LGBTQ youth living in homelessness.
Why True Colors United?
I’ve been interested in housing and homelessness for as long as I can remember, but I believe that sustainable and holistic solutions need to come directly from the impacted community. So I knew I wanted to work on a team invested in centering and amplifying the experience of those they advocate for and True Colors United has really set the bar high in that respect. I think this position is a great opportunity to support that process!
What sort of work will you be up to in your new position – and what are you most excited about?
I’m joining True Colors United’s Training and Education efforts – working for the most part to provide technical assistance to other organizations. This work will revolve mostly on supporting the True Colors Inclusion Assessment, which is a program that enables service providers to assess their current level of LGBTQ-inclusive and affirming practices from a strengths-based perspective and managing the True Colors Inclusion Directory, a national database of organizations that provide services to LGBTQ youth experiencing homelessness. Honestly, I’m excited for every aspect of this job, but I think that meeting service providers where they’re at in their efforts to make their spaces more inclusive and affirming will be the cherry on top!
What do you geek out about?
Mostly maps and puzzles. Biking and other wind-in-hair activities. Oral storytelling and community radio!