What Makes a Successful Advocacy Campaign? A Case Study
Raise Your Voice
Sarah Eyssen, Ashley Nurkin, and Jesse Ryan PFLAG Charlotte
Workshop Block 5: Sunday, October 22 - 9:45 am - 11:15 am
Salon B

The medical community has been slow to adapt treating transgender youth across the country. A parent or caregiver’s first phone call is many times to their pediatrician or family medicine provider asking for resources, information or help. Many parents have been told “I have never treated a transgender child.” Some parents have even been referred to conversion therapists by doctor's unwilling to recognize our transgender youth. How do we as advocates and parents educate our physicians and healthcare providers to better understand our transgender kids? How do we teach our providers best practices towards affirming our transgender kids in a healthcare setting? This session will discuss a case study in Charlotte, NC on a successful campaign that ultimately touched hundreds of healthcare providers.

Presenter Bios

Sarah is the secretary of PFLAG Charlotte.  She has been a guest speaker and presenter at various organizations and events including Carolinas Healthcare Systems, Carolina Conference on Queer Youth, Mecklenburg County Medical Society Child Health Committee, and Teen Health Connection.  Sarah holds a B.A. in Biology from Abilene Christian University and a Juris Doctor from St. Mary's University School of Law.  However, she especially values her training and experience in college as an emergency medical technician, as it provided quite possibly the best preparation for the perils of parenting.  Sarah is a Texas transplant and mama to three messy and perfectly lovely children.

Ashley Nurkin is the President of PFLAG Charlotte. In August 2015, Ashley co-founded Transparents of PFLAG Charlotte, an affiliated organization specifically focused on helping local parents navigate the unique healthcare, socialization, educational and safety issues associated with raising their transgender children. Since its inception, this group has grown to support more than 30 Charlotte families. Ashley has been a featured panelist and speaker for various organizations including Carolinas Healthcare System’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee, PFLAG’s NC State Convention, Time Out Youth’s annual Carolina Queer Conference, Teen Health Connection, and PFLAG’s “Transgender 101” seminar. Ashley has been featured and interviewed regarding transgender issues by local and national media outlets including NPR, Reuters, The Guardian, Charlotte Observer, The Washington Post and Charlotte Parent Magazine. Ashley is a native Charlottean and a graduate of Appalachian State University. She and her husband Matt are the proud parents of two daughters.

Jesse Ryan is a board member of PFLAG Charlotte. In August 2015, Jesse co-founded Transparents of PFLAG Charlotte, an affiliated organization specifically focused on helping local parents navigate the unique healthcare, socialization, educational and safety issues associated with raising their transgender children. Since its inception, this group has grown to support more than 30 Charlotte families. Jesse splits her time working full time as an HR professional and advocating on behalf of LGBTQ youth with local legislators, school administrators and local organizations. Jesse lives in Charlotte,NC with her amazing husband and 3 fabulous children. 

Return to We Are the Change: The 2017 PFLAG National Convention.