About Us

What is the significance of our name?

For us it is important to be inclusive and current with the ever changing identities and terms used in our community. Rainbow Mentors is meant to be an inclusive umbrella term for asexuals, homosexuals, multisexuals, trans people, and intersex people, and alternative to LGBTQIA+. Easier to remember and pronounce. It is a term that doesn’t single out or leave out identities. It creates room  for change and growth.

“We need mentors because growing up can be so confusing. We’re fighting to figure out who we are and having someone who understands the challenges faced by 2SLGBTQIA+ people would make it much easier. Thesementors could help us through things that CIS/Hetro adults wouldn’t be able to understand.”

Ollie He/Him-Youth Community Member

Rainbow Mentors was created to fill a gap in services for children and youth from ages 4 to 18 identifying as TWO-SPIRIT and  LGBTQIA+. Rainbow Mentors is an innovative community development program created by Jax Baxter who has a diploma as a social service worker and experience working with marginalized youth. Jax identifies as Queer non-binary. Rainbow Mentors aims to connect TWO-SPIRIT  and LGBTQIA+ young persons to positive adult MENTORS. Rainbow Mentors strives to be fluid in the ways it provides programming and training. We recognize that over time language, awareness, and concepts in learning styles change. We are committed to always using best practices and staying current with new ideas and the needs of the community.

MISSION

Rainbow Mentors works within an anti-oppressive framework to:

● Cultivate a diverse, inclusive, and welcoming community;

● Create opportunities and spaces for young persons to grow, explore, and experience a sense of belonging;

● Celebrate all young persons who are questioning sexuality and gender, and those identifying within the LGBTQIA+ spectrum. We commit to Guelph’s  TWO-SPIRIT and LGBTQIA+  young people that we will be leaders in providing them the highest quality, volunteer based mentoring, and educational programs. We aim to match young people with similarly identifying adults, using an intersectional lens, and foster positive relationships.

VISION

Every TWO-SPIRIT and LGBTQIA+ child and youth in the Guelph area who needs a mentor has a mentor. To support, engage, inspire and empower all young persons, parents/guardians, and adult mentors to achieve their full potential. To create inclusive and positive spaces for TWO-SPIRIT and LGBTQIA+  young people. We aim to facilitate and promote healthy sexual and gender identities, and positive life experiences with social connection, education and collaboration/partnership with all agencies serving youth.

Meet the Rainbow Team

Jax Baxter

Jax Baxter is the Executive Director of Rainbow Mentors.  Jax grew up in Scarborough and recently moved to Guelph in 2021. Jax was trained as a chef and after working in the industry for 10 years returned to school to obtain a social service worker diploma from Mohawk College. During their student placement for college they sat on the first Brantford Pride committee and started Brantford first gender peer support group at Grand River CHC, they also served as the chairperson and president of Hamilton Pride in 2018/2019  They worked in developmental services for 5 years as front line residential counselor and behaviour technician before shifting to working with youth. Jax identifies as non-binary and has a passion for art and community work within the 2SLGBTQIA+ community.  

Jennecka Stovell

Jennecka Stovell is the owner of Mizz J’s Cleaning Service. She has been operating her business for 10 years. She was born and raised in Bermuda and immigrated to Hamilton in 2007, after attending McMaster University. She was involved with various youth programs in Bermuda such as Big Brother Big Sister Program where she was a mentee. In her youth, joined the Bermuda Cadet Corps reaching the rank of Warrant Officer Class 2 and decided to give back to the program by serving as Cadet Adjutant at the rank of Captain, through the Royal Bermuda Regiment. She also served as a Music Director for 2 years for various summer camps run by the Bermuda Dept. of Youth, Sport and Recreation. Music happens to be one of her many passions in life

Julia Sheldon

Julia Sheldon is a Teen Relationship Coach found @askauntiejulia on TikTok, Instagram & Facebook or www.askauntiejulia.com. She grew up in Waterloo, has lived in several provinces and countries, and moved to Guelph in 2020. As a kid and teen, Julia was involved with Girl Guides for 8 years, Big Sisters as a mentee for 3 years, and CISV Waterloo for 6 years as a leadership volunteer. She was a canoe trip leader and outdoor camp counselor for 6 summers. In her twenties, Julia graduated from University of Ottawa with an honours degree in Geography & Religious Studies, then University of Waterloo with a post-graduate diploma in Sexuality, Marriage, & Family Studies. She continued to volunteer with CISV as an international staff at summer camps with 9-12 countries and as National Junior Representative, and with SHORE Centre as an education volunteer. Now, Julia is passionate about working with youth, authentic expression, and the queer community.