LGBT Youth North West has been awarded close to half a million pounds to help reduce bullying and prejudice faced by young lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Greater Manchester.
The project, funded by a £473,123 grant from the Big Lottery Fund, hopes to reach 22,000 people aged between 13-25 across the region, focusing particularly on Manchester and Stockport.
The group’s mission is to reduce homophobia, biphobia and transphobia through workshops held at schools and youth clubs.
Amelia Lee, LGBT Youth North West strategic director, said: “We hope to reduce prejudice and bullying further so that more LGBT young people can enjoy their youth, be happy in their own bodies and confident to go on to live happy, sociable and successful lives.
“Cities and towns like Manchester and Liverpool tend to have a higher proportion of LGBT young people as they seek the anonymity of urban environments where there tends to be more diversity, and therefore more people with liberal views.
“Through our awareness workshops in schools, we hope to reach young people in the smaller towns of Greater Manchester and beyond, who might not have had the opportunity to meet LGBT people or learn about LGBT identities.”
The grant will allow the project to continue to run youth groups, train young people to become peer supporters, and offer volunteering opportunities.
Young people will be recruited and trained to become peer supporters.
They will offer guidance and advice on issues such as bullying and loneliness through one to one meetings, text and email and social networks.
Peer educators will also be on hand to deliver workshops in schools and to teachers, social and youth workers.
The project is one of two in the North West to receive funding via the Reaching Communities programme.
Tim Davies-Pugh, Big Lottery Fund deputy director for England, said: “Homophobic bullying and other prejudices can knock young people’s confidence which can have an impact on their relationships with people, career aspirations and reaching their full potential.
“Our grant to LGBT Youth North West will promote understanding and more inclusive environments where young people can be happier and thrive.”
Image courtesy of jglsongs, with thanks.