Tom Moore | He, Him, His
Steering Committee | Flint, MI
Michigan Forward in Enhancing Research and Community Equity (MFierce), is a partnership of community organizations, youth advocates, and public health researchers working together to reduce STIs among young sexual and gender minority youth in Southeast Michigan. MFierce is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Community Approaches to Reducing STIs Program and is a project of the Center for Sexuality and Health Disparities at the University of Michigan School of Public Health.
MFierce is a coalition that utilizes a shared decision-making process among all partners to address STIs in our region. MFierce is comprised of three entities; a SexLab team, a group of Youth Advisory Board (YAB) members who are youth advocates, ages 20-30, and a Steering Committee of organization and agency representatives. We are currently implementing the Health Access Initiative, a LGBTQ+ cultural responsiveness training and technical assistance program for local clinics and health centers. Our second initiative is developing the Advocacy Collective, a LGBTQ+ youth health advocate organization.
In the spirit of promoting LGBTQ+ affirming resources and services, check out this great event this month: “Building Layers of Support with LGBTQIAP2S Youth and Families”, hosted by the University of Michigan School of Social Work. Taking place Friday, May 13 from 9 AM – 12:15 PM at the University of Michigan Detroit Center. Check out more information on the event here.
How did you get involved with MFierce?
- Through Wellness Services, Inc.
The MFierce Coalition uses a community-engaged approach where decision-making is shared among the three entities. That sounds complex. What are the most important take aways from using participatory processes?
- The ability to hear others voices and ideas which adds to the depth of understanding and decision-making.
What is the most exciting thing that you’ve experienced while being apart of MFierce?
- Working with a great group of people who further help me learn and connect to amazing resources/programs in Southeastern Michigan.
When I talk to people about MFierce, I tell them…
- Usually things about Wellness, but I spend more time listening then talking.
“Community” is a word people use a lot but don’t always define. What does it mean to you?
- The result of individuals coming together, or being grouped together, and being defined by similar or particular characteristics or behaviors.
How do you define “justice”?
- Justice is an idea and/or act of protecting what an individual/group believes to be the right.
What else is going on in your life that you would like to share?
- Not much, other than working at Wellness and the Flint Pride Planning committee I lead a very boring life full of books and video games.
What are three adjectives that best describe you that people might not initially think of?
- Tina Belcher-esk
- Friendly, and
Can you tell us about some of your heros/sheros/queeros?
- My grandmother, and
- My college advisor.
If you could look into the future, what would you tell your future self?
- I do not know. Whatever I told my future self they probably would already know due to already having done or thinking it. My future self would probably swiftly get annoyed with my past self for wasting my time traveling abilities going to the future instead of going to the past and doing something which would better have helped us out, maybe win the lottery, do better in college, or avoid the myriad of embarrassing moments which make up much of my life leading to that moment.
And the most important question of our time, if you were a crayon, what color would you be?
- Forest Green