Relationships are rarely easy, even for people with life experience. Thus, the Virginia Anti-Violence Project has organized a workshop for people over age 50 to help learn healthy relationship skills.
“The workshop is designed to help us develop and maintain better relationships, be they with family members, friends, coworkers, spouses…people in our lives,” said Bill Harrison, CEO of the Gay Community Center of Richmond.
VAVP Community Advocate Jackie Small said that teaching relationship skills fits into her organization’s mission of ending violence in LGBTQ communities.
The free workshop will take place from 12:30-2 p.m. on August 3 at the Metropolitan Community Church, and will serve as a kind of preview to a six-week evening class run by the VAVP.
“There will be lots of group sharing, discussions and sharing of ideas on what works and what doesn’t,” Harrison said. “This class is not only very helpful to the participants, but also lots of fun.” Participants do not need to register for the class to attend the workshop.
“Our intention is that our services should be accessible to people across their lifespan,” Small said of why the VAVP is targeting people over age 50. The group has previously organized workshops on this same topic for teens and young people, Small said.
The workshop will cover a variety of necessary relationship skills, including boundaries, communications and expectations. “One of our goals is to help create communities in which people are able to have healthy, happy relationships,” Small said.
“And so when Jack came out to me, he told me about a gay bar in Richmond, the Dial Tone. And he said ‘I know a couple hundred gay men,’ and I thought to myself, ‘he’s really a liar, because there’s not 200 gay men in America.’”