The Investigaytors is a free training program for young gay, bi, queer, trans, and 2-Spirit men in Toronto who are interested in learning more about research. The Investigaytors equips young guys (aged 18-29) with the knowledge and skills necessary to understand the field of gay men’s health research, and provides opportunities to apply these skills and gain practical research experience. The Investigaytors program was created by the Community-Based Research Centre for gay men’s health in Vancouver (cbrc.net/investigaytors) and brought to Toronto in 2016 with the help of OurSpace co-founder Aidan Ablona.
The Investigaytors approach to education is interactive, hands on, and, most importantly, fun! We believe that “learning by doing” is an effective way to provide training and experience to interested young researchers. For our first research project, the Investigaytors engaged in the research needed to set up the first regular health survey for gay, bi, and queer men in Ontario. Our goal was to ensure that this future survey asks the right questions, is sustainable, and serves as a platform for future research projects of the Investigaytors.
As an Investigaytor, participants:
- Develop research skills in community-based gay men’s health research, including conducting, and analyzing data from, interviews, focus groups, surveys, and other sources.
- Develop written and presentation skills for sharing the findings of their research.
- Connect with researchers, service providers, and community leaders involved in gay men’s health in Ontario.
- Meaningfully contribute to ongoing research projects.
- Acquire a number of e-learning skills and practice.
In Toronto, The Investigaytors program is now hosted at the CRUISElab at the University of Toronto with support from the Ontario HIV Treatment Network (OHTN). Meetings are held at the CRUISElab with food and transit tokens provided at every meeting.
Click here to contact The Investigaytors team for more information.