Creating Welcoming Spaces for LGBTQ+ Individuals in Substance Misuse Prevention Programs


Is your organization as welcoming and responsive to the LGBTQ+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) population as it could be? How can we facilitate more affirming and effective prevention services for members of the LGBTQ+ community? In this webinar, we will explore some of the ways we can increase positive outcomes with LGBTQ+ individuals, from outward-facing initial points of contact with our organizations to long-term internal actions toward increased representation and leadership.  We will also hear from a panel of LGBTQ+-identified young adults about their experiences with prevention providers and their thoughts for the field moving forward.



After the training, participants will be able to:

  • Review their own workplace practices with an eye to where processes could be made more welcoming and affirming
  • Implement workplace practices that have been shown to increase positive behavioral health outcomes for LGBTQ+ individuals
  • Integrate the perspectives of individual LGBTQ+-identified young adults into their prevention work



Marissa Carlson, MS, CPS

Marissa is the Executive Director of the NH Teen Institute, a leadership development nonprofit working with middle & high school students from around NH & New England in a variety of areas including substance misuse prevention, peer mentoring, and creating positive school & community climate.   As part of her role at TI, she oversees and facilitates training for youth participants, youth & adult volunteer program staff, and outside behavioral health and education professionals.  She is a trainer for multiple workshops developed through SAMHSA systems, and is a member of the advisory council of the New England Prevention Technology Transfer Center (PTTC).  In addition, she is the President of the Prevention Certification Board of NH, the NH Prevention delegate to the IC&RC, and serves as the chairperson of the Prevention Specialist credentialing committee.  Outside of her prevention work, Marissa is a founding member of Mill City Productions, a theatre company in Western Massachusetts.  She graduated from Pomona College with a BA in Psychology, received an MS in Nonprofit Management from Bay Path University, and has been a Certified Prevention Specialist since 2011.



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