On Sunday, The Boston Globe highlighted a camp that offers a safe space for transgender and gender non-conforming youth called Camp Aranu’tiq. The camp was started in Connecticut by founder and director Nick Teich, who has long worked in camps and was volunteering as a counselor at one until he came out as a transgender man and was told not to come back by that camp’s head. Now, Teich has his own camp with a second location in California, and the week-long camp sessions see dozens of transgender youth ages 8 to 15 finding a place where they can have fun and be themselves.
Stories like this are important because they share knowledge of a critical resource in the lives of young transgender people. For some campers, Camp Aranu’tiq is a rare place where they are not facing constant bullying and harassment or riddled with anxiety, but are instead embraced by their peers and superiors. Parents and educators particularly need to know what they can do to ensure that transgender youth are receiving support and building community, especially when there seem to be so few resources available. The media can help this process by reporting on the groups, organizations, and other resources offering direct assistance to transgender youth and their families.