Clem has a varied background in youth mentoring and documentary filmmaking. They are an evolving, passionate, dedicated storyteller & guide with 9 years media production experience and over 7 years experience mentoring at-risk youth. They currently work as Field Manager at a short term residential crisis intervention program focused on horticulture therapy, wellness, mentoring and rites of passage as modalities for treatment and identity development. In their role, they are responsible for managing and training the guides who work directly with the students.

As an initiated queer and non-binary person, Clem is committed to serving the unique needs of LGBTQI youth. They are particularly interested in creating spaces for queer initiation and identity development, and want to help support rites of passage programs to better serve and amplify the voices of queer youth. In their current role they serve as a primary in-house resource to advise on policies & procedures related to LGBTQI+ youth.

Clem is humbled and committed to serve on the board of Youth Passageways and to sit as a member of the Cross Cultural Protocols working group. Above all, they are a lover of people; with empathy, compassion and dedication to those on the margins of society. They have unending gratitude for all the teachers and mentors in their life.

Key Points

During our session with Clem we explore such themes as:

  • Defining queer initiation
  • Claiming an identity in an evolving community
  • Identifying the role of gender in rites of passage
  • Honing in on best practices for guiding non-binary and/or questioning folks in ROPs
  • The importance of queer mentors and elders
  • And much, much more…

We talk about some great places to look for resource on queer-focused initiation – here are a few:

Youth Passageways (Directory of Programs and Groups)

School of Lost Borders (Offers Queer-Specific ROPs and Vision Quests)

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Episode 5: Clem Wilson