Side by Side Caregiver & Leader Workshop

Dedicated to creating supportive communities where Virginia’s LGBTQ+ youth can define themselves, belong, and flourish, Side by Side is here to support your homeschooling journey. This workshop is aimed to caregivers and group leaders wanting to learn to support the LGBTQ+ youth in their communities to advocate for themselves, build stronger connections to our large community, and celebrate queer joy!

Date: Monday, September 18th, 2023 from 10-11am

Cost: Free for members.

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Facilitator Biographies

Shannon Cassano (she/her)
Training and Education Coordinator

Shannon is an instructional professional with nine years’ experience in curriculum development, professional collaboration, and positive engagement. Her professional experience is in K-12 public education, where she served as a theatre teacher with Henrico and Chesterfield County Public Schools. During her tenure as a public school educator, she learned how to balance professionalism and empathy when navigating relationships between youth, their families, and school faculty.

When Shannon is not working, she is playing with her dogs, cooking, or binge-watching Netflix with her fiancé.

About Shannon’s Work: Shannon’s role at Side by Side includes developing training and educational resources, leading
presentations and workshops with K-12 students and educators and helping to develop inclusive communities through
partnerships with non-profit and for-profit organizations.


Abram Clear (they/them)
School Programs Coordinator

Abram is a leadership development professional with experience in community building and creating inclusive, celebratory environments for LGBTQ+ youth and young adults. They investigated the nuances of identity construction via language during their graduate studies in Linguistics at the University of Toronto. Abram is passionate about combating linguistic prejudice and all forms of identity-based discrimination. During their undergraduate career,
they helped found Rainbow Coalition, a student organization addressing the marginalization of non-white and trans LGBTQ+ students, and led education initiatives on LGBTQ+ history, health, and allyship.

When Abram isn’t at work, they are hiking in their native southwestern Virginia, baking, or painting.

About Abram’s Work: Abram’s role at Side by Side includes supporting the creation and growth of GSA (Gender and Sexuality Alliance) student organizations, co-facilitating presentations for students, caregivers, and organizations, and supporting leadership development for LGBTQ+ youth.

Want to join us? Register below!

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