• Odyssey Youth Movement

Get To Know Programs Manager Maggie!

Upon meeting Maggie Bolden, Odyssey's new Programs Manager, it's clear that her skills at connection and programming make her well-suited to being a part of Odyssey. A former Residence Director at Gonzaga University with a Master's degree in Student Development, Maggie has ample experience programming a wide variety of events, managing crisis response, and identity development for a wide age range. As the Programs Manager, Maggie is responsible for managing Odyssey's drop-in programs, which includes everything from Queer Scouts to safer sex education. In her new role, she wants to work to ensure that Odyssey's programming is "structured, educational, and fun, and aligns with Odyssey's values and principles."

"I really enjoy programming. Specifically, I'm really passionate about the development and education that goes on with peer to peer mentorship," Maggie said in her introductory interview. "I’ve done a lot of programming before with college students. Outside of the classroom, how can [Odyssey] engage with people who are of a student age and plan things that are fun, educational, and build community amongst them?"

Another aspect of the Programs Manager's job is supervision of the team of mentors and volunteers who work hard to meet Odyssey's mission of promoting equity for LGBTQ+ youth and young adults here in Spokane. "As a queer person myself...having not only queer peers but queer mentors or ally mentors can be really important in your own identity development," Maggie says. "[Mentors] can teach you how to exist as yourself and how to exist in the world."

Even in her life outside of work, some of Maggie's favorite activities revolve around connecting with the world around her. "Love a good karaoke session, love a good dance floor, and I love yard games. Anything that involves being with my people." In addition, Maggie loves finding ways to connect with the earth, whether through gardening, hiking, or kayaking. "I’m an indigenous person, so I’m particularly passionate about how we connect to our surroundings whether that’s our neighbor or our location that we’re in," she says. "I really love plants; planting things and watching them grow."

With summer in full swing and vaccination numbers climbing, Maggie is excited to start chatting with youth about their hopes for Odyssey's future. "I’m most looking forward to hearing more about the vision that [Odyssey] youth have for the center, especially coming out of the pandemic. I’m excited to dive in head-on and see what we can do together."

Odyssey Digital Drop-In programming continues on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 4-6PM for youth ages 13-18 and Thursdays from 5-7PM for young adults ages 18-24. For more information on Odyssey's programming and other services, visit our programs page.

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