Racial Justice & Civic Engagement Program

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Anna Zheng (Racial Justice & Civic Engagement Intern / Pronouns: she/her) grew up in Overland Park, Kansas and traveled to places all over the US in high school. She visited Seattle during her junior year for a journalism convention and found herself drawn to the Pacific Northwest. Attending Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA solidified her love for the west coast. As a Gender Studies major and someone who does activism-focused programming in college, she found her passion in creating spaces for marginalized folks to be heard. (She'll be graduating this December.)

When she was a junior in college, she took the position of the Executive Director for an event called the Power and Privilege Symposium at Whitman College. The summer after, she became a fellow at The Washington Bus in Seattle and volunteered for three campaigns, canvassed and phonebanked for local propositions. That summer became the moment she realized that grassroot organizing can really help change communities. She constantly tries to find ways to connect with people and wants to continue doing advocacy work for the queer communities around.


To improve the physical, mental and emotional health of the greater Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Intersex, Asexual, Two-Spirit (LGBTQIA2S*) communities in Portland.


About the program

According to the 2016 Census, Portland is 76.1% white. As the Racial Justice & Civic Engagement Intern, Zheng created the foundation of the program at The Equi Institute and hopes to present information to the Portland community of what the queer/trans communities of color need in order to increase the overall health in those communities.

Started in June 2017, The Racial Justice & Civic Engagement is a program that empowers QTPOC voices, experiences and lives. After researching, reflecting and brainstorming, Zheng and The Equi Institute staff decided to create a survey that evaluates the current physical, mental, and emotional well-being of the QTPOC communities in the greater Portland area. The QTPOC Health Survey asks questions about demographics, about the frequency of feelings, such as anxiety, depression and fear, and about certain systems and lack of resources that are blocking folks from feeling welcomed and safe in our communities.


Goals of the Program


Survey QTPOC communities

Gather data

Identify where resources are lacking

Create advocacy programs and resources that are community-oriented and solidarity-oriented to better the QTPOC communities


If you identify as QTPOC, take the survey! If you know anyone who identifies as QTPOC, send this their way! We want to get an extensive picture of the current health status of QTPOC communitites in the greater Portland area; ages 15+ are welcome.

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With the current political state,

The Equi Institute stands by your side with love and solidarity. We care about QTPOC health.


The Racial Justice & Civic Engagement Programat The Equi Institute