Filipino psychologists and counselors took part in a national facilitators training workshop on how to conduct public learning sessions dubbed “LGBT Psych 101”. The workshop was organized in Quezon City by the LGBT Psychology Special Interest Group of the Psychological Association of the Philippines (PAP), the first and only collective of LGBT mental health professionals in South East Asia.
Eighteen participants from Davao, Zamboanga, Cavite, Batangas, Albay, Quezon, and Metro Manila mastered concepts related to sexual orientation, gender identity, stigma, minority stress, and LGBT well-being, as well as skills in public speaking and LGBT advocacy. These newly trained facilitators came from institutions all over the country, including Batangas State University, Southern Luzon State University, Bicol University, Miriam College, Ateneo de Davao, Ateneo de Zamboanga, and UP Manila.
LGBT advocates like Anne Lim of Galang Philippines, Joy Cruz of STRAP, Disney Aguila of Pinoy Deaf Rainbow and TransDeaf Philippines, and Jonas Bagas of TLF Share were among the guest resource persons. A highlight of the two-and-a-half day event was a special panel on Filipino LGBT life and love featuring voices from the LGBT community and moderated by Pierce Docena, professor of LGBT psychology at UP Tacloban.
As a follow-up to the first workshop in 2013, this initiative aimed to build the pool of talent – Filipino psychologists and counselors – committed to carrying out PAP’s (2011) LGBT-nondiscrimination policy. Attendees of the workshop will be conducting at least two LGBT Psych 101 sessions in their respective institutions and with community partners within the next six months.
Co-organizing the event was the University of the Philippines Center for Women’s Studies Foundation, with support from the LGBT Concerns Office of the American Psychological Association and the Arcus Foundation.