LGBTQ2 resources for parents and professionals

A collection of resources to support foster and adoptive parents whose children identify as LGBTQ2 as well as information to help child welfare professionals better support LGBTQ2 youth who are in foster care.  

The LGBTQ Family Friendly Children’s Book List

This Book List was compiled from Rainbowfamilies.org, the Gay Book Blog, amazon.com and the Family Equality Council’s personal favorites.

Supporting Your LGBTQ Youth -  A Guide for Foster Parents

In this factsheet, you will learn about LGBTQ youth in the child welfare system, the unique risks they face, and the important role that foster parents can play in reducing those risks. You will discover specific actions that you can take to create a welcoming home for all youth in your care and to promote your youth’s health and well-being in the community. At the end of this factsheet are links to many resources for more information and support.

Talking to Children About Our Families

The information that follows is divided into developmental stages based on the types of needs children have at different ages. It is intended to support parents in responding to their children's (spoken and unspoken) questions as they come to understand who they are in the context of their family and who their family is in the context of their community.

Supportive Families, Healthy Children

The Family Acceptance Project is developing a new family model to increase family support, decrease risk and promote the well-being of LGBT children and youth, based on our research. We are developing a series of written and visual materials for families, caregivers and providers. This booklet offers basic information to help parents and caregivers support their LGBT children, to reduce their risk for depression, suicide, substance abuse and HIV infection and to promote their well-being. It is available in English, Spanish and Chinese.

Supporting and Caring for Bisexual Youth

In 2012, the Human Rights Campaign conducted a groundbreaking survey of more than 10,000 LGBT youth, ages 13 - 17, in the United States. The survey asked participants to talk about the levels of acceptance and support they felt from their families, peers and communities, as well as their participation in both school and extracurricular activities. This report focuses on the nearly 40 percent of survey participants who identified as bisexual. It is important to note that while this is one of the largest surveys of its kind, the findings are not representative of the entire U.S. LGBT youth population. The findings do align, however, with many lessons learned by those who work with LGBT youth.

Supporting and Caring For Transgender Children

This guide is designed for anyone who knows a transgender or gender-expansive child, plans to write about children who transition, or simply wants to learn more. It reviews what medical and education experts know about transgender children, explores some myths about gender transition in childhood, and offers suggestions for adults with a transgender child in their life.

Affirming and Supporting LGBTQ Youth in Child Welfare

A guide to healthy approaches and harmful practices.

Supporting Transgender Children and Youth Involved in the Court System

Court can be an intimidating setting for anyone—children, youth and adults alike. It has a structure unlike any other, with court proceedings following specific protocols for interaction and authority resting with one individual. Vulnerable teens have the potential to experience an especially difficult time in the court setting, particularly transgender children and youth. These tips may help child welfare professionals, caregivers, judges, and court staff prepare and support transgender children and youth participating in court proceedings.

Toolkit to support child welfare agencies in serving LGBTQ children, youth and families

The Capacity Building Center for States has designed this toolkit to help States and territories meet the needs of LGBTQ children, youth, and families by providing links to knowledge- and skill-building resources, including articles, videos, tools, training curricula, tip sheets, information briefs, websites, and other products. The Center for States has divided the resources into five categories:

  1. Creating a Culturally Competent Environment
  2. Best Practices for Supporting LGBTQ Children, Youth, and Families
  3. Training Curricula
  4. Supportive and Affirming Organization List
  5. Studies, Information Briefs and Reports

Beginner's Guide To LGBTQ Inclusion: What it means for your work

A beginners' guide to working with youth from the Human Rights Campaign's All Children-All Families initiative. Research shows that LGBTQ youth are overrepresented in foster care and face an increased risk of both negative experiences and outcomes. They have a higher average number of placements; are more likely to report harassment, discrimination, and violence; experience higher rates of health and mental health challenges and lower self-esteem; and are less likely to achieve permanency. Child welfare systems must do better by ensuring that SOGIE is included in considerations of the best interests of children and youth and that all youth receive services free of discrimination based on SOGIE. This means developing the competency and infrastructure for working effectively with youth in ways that are inclusive and affirming for all.

Beginner's Guide To LGBTQ Inclusion: What it means for your work with parents 

A beginners' guide to working with LGBTQ parents from the Human Rights Campaign's All Children-All Families initiative. Despite recent progress toward legal and social equality for LGBTQ* Americans, a societal stigma remains strong and LGBTQ parents continue to experience barriers when engaging with child welfare systems. For example, in a recent HRC survey, child welfare professionals acknowledged that bias against LGBTQ foster and adoptive parents still exists.1 Nineteen percent of participants felt that straight/ heterosexual foster or adoptive parents are preferable to LGBQ parents. Similarly, nearly a quarter of respondents expressed a preference for cisgender (non-transgender) parents. Now — as some lawmakers work to legalize discrimination against LGBTQ adults seeking to foster or adopt — it is perhaps more important than ever for child welfare systems to take action to ensure LGBTQ adults receive the services they deserve free from discrimination.

A Practitioner’s Resource Guide: Helping Families to Support Their LGBT Children

This resource guide was developed to help practitioners who work in a wide range of settings to understand the critical role of family acceptance and rejection in contributing to the health and well-being of adolescents who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender. This includes practitioners who work in primary care, behavioral health, school-based services, family service agencies, homeless and run-away programs, and foster care and juvenile justice settings. Its intent is to help practitioners implement best practices in engaging and helping families and caregivers to support their LGBT children. 

Where can I find legal services?

Colorado Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (“LGBT”) Bar Association is a voluntary professional association of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender attorneys, judges, paralegals and law students and allies who provide a LGBT presence within Colorado’s legal community.  We exist to promote the recognition of civil and human rights; promote sensitivity to legal issues faced by the LGBT community; assure the fair and just treatment of members of the LGBT community; provide opportunities for LGBT attorneys, judges, and law students and allies to interact in a professional setting; build alliances with other minority bar associations and legal organizations; and enhance the practice and professional expertise of lawyers who serve or who are members of the LGBT community.

The Center's Legal Helpline - Call 303-282-6524 or email clip@glbtcolorado.org.  

ACLU - The ACLU of Colorado is the state’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. We’re a private institution funded exclusively by the generous donations of our supporters. Our mission is to protect, defend and extend the civil rights and civil liberties of all people in Colorado through litigation, education and advocacy.

Where can I find medical resources?

Medical care

Mental health

  • The Center - The Center provides programming, support and services tailored for Colorado’s transgender community. These include weekly transgender social and support programs, a Transgender speakers bureau, and ongoing educational and networking sessions throughout the year.
  • The Gender Identity Center of Colorado - The Gender Identity Center of Colorado, Inc. is a non-profit corporation formed to provide support to anyone gender variant in their gender identity and expression. The Gender Identity Center of Colorado is also an informational and educational resource to the community at large.
  • UCH Outpatient Psychiatry, LGBTQ mental health clinic - Anschutz Medical Campus, Bldg. 500, Level 2 - West Wing13001 E. 17th Place, Aurora, Colorado 80045, for appointments call (303) 724-1000
Where can I connect with others socially?
  • Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) - PFLAG offers monthly meetings with support groups, programs on various aspects of GLBT lives, and a speaker's bureau. They also operate a hotline staffed by parents and friends who provide support to people dealing with concerns about sexual orientation.
  • Mile High Freedom Band - The Mile High Freedom Band is an established charitable organization serving the GLBT community in Denver since 1984.
  • Tri-Ess Colorado - The Society For The Second Self, Tri-Ess, is an international support and social organization for Heterosexual Crossdressers, their spouses, partners, children and friends.

LGBTQ Centers

  • Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center of Colorado (The Center) - The GLBTCCC provides Youth Services programs, Support groups, PrideFest organizing, Peer Support, phone help lines, and many other services. Call to inquire about referrals to gay-friendly businesses and resources such as gay and lesbian AA meetings, counselors, social groups, and professional groups. 
  • Out Boulder County - Since 1994 Out Boulder County has educated, advocated and provided services, programs and support to Boulder County's Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) communities.  Through activities, support groups and events Out Boulder County reaches over 9,000 people each year. The organization had a location in Boulder and another location in Longmont.
  • La Gente Unida - La  Gente Unida is a nonprofit group whose purpose is to educate ourselves and the public about issues of concern to Latino/a gay, lesbian, bi and trans people. La Gente an all-volunteer group with no paid staff. They provide speakers for classes and other public forums, periodic lobbying on legislation and ballot initiatives, newsletter updates no more than once a month and a referral network about resources in the community. 
  • Colorado West Pride - Promoting diversity, acceptance, progression and unity within Western Colorado & Eastern Utah.! An L.G.B.T.Q.S.A Organization.
  • Glad Four Corners Alliance for Diversity - Rainbows & Mountains! Dancing shoes or hiking boots, come play with us in beautiful Southwest Colorado!
  • Northern Colorado Pride - NoCoPride provides summer and year-round positive visibility and something for everyone, intersectionally, throughout Northern Colorado.
Where can I find LGBTQ youth groups and programs?
  • Survivors Organizing for Liberation - Since 1986 Survivors Organizing for Liberation (SOL) has been dedicated to eliminating all forms of violence within and against the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) communities in Colorado.
  • Rainbow Alley - A safe space supporting LGBTQ youth and their allies ages 11 to 21.
  • Urban Peak - Urban Peak helps homeless youth at risk of becoming homeless overcome real life challenges by providing essential services and a supportive community, empowering them to become self-sufficient adults.
  • Auraria Campus Metro State University LGBTQ Center
  • CU Boulder - CU Boulder is home to 11 different student groups offering community for a wide diversity of LGBTQ students, from those that are geared toward professional specializations, such as Out in STEM, to those that support students of color, international students and students of faith.  
  • Inside/Out Youth Services (Colorado Springs) - Inside, we provide safety and acceptance for LGBTQI+ youth and their allies. Out in the community, we promote understanding, respect, and equality. All groups and services at Inside/Out are provided to our youth free of charge. 
  • Gender Identity Center - The Gender Identity Center of Colorado, Inc. is a non-profit corporation formed to provide support to anyone gender variant in their gender identity and expression. The Gender Identity Center of Colorado is also an informational and educational resource to the community at large.
  • TYES-Trans-youth education and support of Colorado - TYES is a Colorado-based, state-wide group supporting all gender-expansive children and their families. TYES is dedicated to helping parents support their gender-expansive children, and to help families find the information, resources, and the understanding that they need.
Where can I find financial and employment resources?
  • The Alexander Foundation - The Alexander foundation exists to enhance the lives of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people by providing financial assistance to those in need throughout Colorado.
  • The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act  - Financial assistance for training and employment is available to those who qualify through Colorado Workforce Centers.  There are adult and youth programs available.
  • Colorado Workforce Centers - Workforce Centers provide a variety of free services to assist employers and job seekers alike. These include:
    • Job listings
    • Computer and Internet access
    • Career counseling and training for job seekers
    • Recruitment of workers, pre-screening and referral services
    • Tax credits and training reimbursement for employers
    • Customers can choose either self-service or staff-assisted options to meet their employment needs.
Colorado Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline
1-844-CO-4-KIDS (1‑844‑264‑5437)
Available 24 hours a day, every day. Don't hesitate to call and get help. 
Anyone witnessing a child in a life-threatening situation should call 911 immediately.