Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2023


Goal Statement: Acknowledge and highlight the increased mental health risks for LGBTQ+ youth and young adults while working to implement prevention efforts to mitigate, and eventually eliminate the increased risks for this population.

Significant Findings: The LGBTQ+ youth and young adult population faces many challenges throughout their daily lives. One such challenge plaguing the community is their increased risk for mental health concerns compared to their heterosexual, cisgender counterparts (The Trevor Project, n.d.; Marlay et al., 2022). In the rural Jackson County, Indiana community, very few prevention and treatment efforts are implemented to serve this community. It is worth noting that there are very limited studies regarding the implementation and effectiveness of LGBTQ+ youth and young adult prevention and treatment programs related to the mental health risks experienced by this population. However, a feasibility study was conducted for a program called Being Out with Strength (BOWS), and it was found to have a high demand with a high probability of success (Hall et al., 2019). Implementing programs such as BOWS and strong advocacy at the institutional, community, and public policy levels could elicit many positive changes and contribute to the overall goal of preventing mental health risks for this population.

Objectives/Strategies/Interventions/Next Steps: Develop and implement effective prevention programs in community mental health facilities like BOWS. Increase peer-reviewed studies to determine the effectiveness of prevention programs for this population. Engage in multiple advocacy efforts to make changes within the community and at the public policy level. Increase the visibility of allyship to the local LGBTQ+ youth and young adult community. Enhance focus of LGBTQ+ cultural competency among all professionals in rural communities.