JASMYN resuming old, and new, LGBTQ+ youth-centered services

Indie Jones and Carter Mudgett

JASMYN, Jacksonville’s LGBTQ+ youth organization, has resumed several resources previously canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Officially titled the Jacksonville Area Sexual Minority Youth Network (JASMYN), they partner with organizations across Northeast Florida to help promote equality and human rights. “75% of LGBTQ people report everyday discrimination in Jacksonville,” according to their 2020 annual report

Since COVID-19, they have launched a new drop-in psychiatric care program that provides necessary evaluations and medications to visitors — ages 18 to 29 — under the supervision of a licensed nurse practitioner. This move joins JASMYN’s efforts to offer low-cost mental health and wellness programs to LGBTQ+ youth in North Florida. 

“Some of these services come directly from JASMYN staff and interns, while other services are provided by community partners of JASMYN,” Salym Winter, the organization’s mental health services supervisor. “All providers partnered with JASMYN are LGBTQ affirming and are low-cost to youth and their families.”

Partnering with Baptist Health providers, visitors can now participate in counseling sessions on Wednesdays from noon to 4 p.m. This care is extended to “LGBTQ youth ages 13 to 24 years old,” Winter said. 

Interns who study under the Masters of Social Work (MSW) program at the Smith School of Social Work, the University of North Florida and Florida State University help provide services while simultaneously earning experience in the field.

“All providers partnered with JASMYN are LGBTQ affirming and are low-cost to youth and their families,” Winter explained.

They shared some of the inspiration behind these new programs. 

“We understood the urgency to support youth and their families through the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic, losing social contact with friends, peers, and other supportive adults in the school setting, as well as the general anxiety, depression, and increased suicidality already prevalent for LGBTQ youth.”

They recommend joining JASYMN’s “Free Your Mind” drop-in hours to learn more about how to access programs and partnerships. From there, mental health staff can support anyone interested in finding which is the best fit. 

Visit their calendar to check out upcoming events and services or visit their Instagram for both weekly and daily updates. 


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