We are going to use this space to allow everybody to know how the money that is raised for us to give as grants is benefiting so many people in our LGBT+ and HIV communities. We will post progress reports on the local projects that we´re currently funding, but we´re going to start with a presentation that I gave as part of The Brighton Pride Summit this year. Presentations were given by all the major “parties” involved in delivering Brighton Pride, and we looked at the effect the event has city wide.
Importantly the effect on the local economy was reported on (worth over 20 million to the city and surrounding area)
..as was the amount raised for good causes..Primarily The Rainbow Fund
My brief was to explain the history of The Rainbow Fund, what we do, and that Brighton Pride is our biggest, but certainly not only, fundraiser. I had ten minutes, and this is a record of my presentation….a mixture of my narration, and the content of the slides.
“Thirty Years ago, when faced with the tragedy of the AIDS crisis our LGBT+ communities responded by setting up grass roots voluntary groups, and fundraising.
At the time these voluntary groups spoke about funding raising together, but never did.
Fast forward 20 years. In 2008 James Ledward and Cllr Paul Elgood started a public appeal, to commission and build The Brighton AIDS memorial. Once this was completed the concept of an umbrella mechanism for distributing local LGBTQ+ community fundraising was revived as a legacy project, and The Rainbow Fund was created.
We have a well established system where LGBT+ projects apply through an annual grants round, in the knowledge that our grants panel will consider their applications in the context of need across the sector. Fundraisers can trust that what they raise will go where its needed, and that the projects, are carefully monitored.
I’ve been around the LGBT+ block a few times, including most of the Prides over the last 25 years. Fundraising has always been a fundamental part of the event. As the previous organisers ran into trouble, there was no money left to distribute to Charities for four years. When Paul Kemp and Dulcie Weaver, took over in 2013 they were determined to build a Pride with Purpose and ring fenced £1 from every ticket sold for LGBT+ projects.
The Rainbow Fund had the wherewithal to distribute the funds raised fairly and transparently and were chosen by Pride to do just that. Pride is now the largest contributor to The Rainbow Fund, though by no means the only one.
So, here we are..
- Pride has raised 250,000 for good causes this year
- £180,000 for distribution to LGBTQ+ projects through grants from The Rainbow Fund
- Fundraising up 50% from last year
- With number of applications up 85%,
- and total grants awarded up by 65%.
- We have awarded grants for 22 LGBTQ+ and HIV projects this year..
Why, you may ask, are record amounts needed for LGBT+ projects…?, and the simple answer is that our LGBT+ and HIV communities are disproportionately affected in several areas. Our battles for equality have been won, and there are reasons to celebrate the changes in the law, on age of consent, adoption, marriage and civil partnership, hate crimes, and workplace equality.. Our community fighting for our rights. A fight that is not over for Trans people in this country.
These were the legal battles for equality, now we are left, with the consequences of stigma and social isolation.
It is estimated that up to 15% of the population of Brighton and Hove identifies as LGBT+, against 2% nationally, and according to the council’s website they experience a higher risk than the heterosexual population of bullying, abuse, discrimination, exclusion, mental health issues, self-harming and suicidal behaviour. Those who are socially isolated and those on low income are more susceptible.
HATE CRIMES AND LGBTQ+ PHOBIAS
- 40% of respondents had experienced an incident because they were LGBT+ in previous 12 months……….The National LGBT survey (2017)
- There was a 147% increase in reported LGBT hate crimes in the 3 months after the referendum vote……….Gallop LGBT anti-violence Charity
- Nationally 25% of young homeless identify as LGBT+, in Brighton that figure goes up to 33%. 69% of those homeless young people were rejected by their parents, and suffered abuse within the family……….Albert Kennedy Trust
- 25% of trans people had been discriminated against when seeking rented accommodation……….Stonewall
We awarded a grant to The Brighton and Hove LGBT Community Safety Forum Next Step project which works with those affected by hate crime, domestic abuse, bullying, and homelessness by supporting them back into education, training, volunteering or work. In short to move on with their lives. £15,000
LGBT+ MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES
- 52% of young LGBT+ people reported self harm compared to 25% of heterosexual non-trans young people……….Public Health Matters
- 44% of young LGBT people have considered suicide compared to 26% of heterosexual non- trans young people……….Public Health Matters
- 33% of Trans people have attempted suicide more than once in their life……….Public Health Matters
- In the previous 12 months the following had attempted to take their own life……….Gay Men’s Health Survey 2013
All Men, all sexualities. 0.4%
Gay men 3%
BME Gay Men 5%
BME Lesbian 7%
Bisexual Men 5%
Bisexual Women 7%
Gay and Bisexual men with a disability 10%
- “Developing an LGBTQ+ inclusive approach to protecting and improving mental health and to prevent suicide should be done alongside LGBT community organisations and members”……….Public Health Matters
We awarded grants to these projects.
Mindout “Out of the Blue” suicide prevention project, and peer support projects
Mindout LGBTQ counselling project
Men Talk Health..12 podcasts around LGBT Mental Health issues
Allsorts LGBT youth project. To address isolation, invisibility and low self esteem of LGBT children and young people.
Longhill School LGBT group. Project to produce films for use in schools
Switchboard Rainbow Café project for LGBTQ people living with memory loss and dementia
Switchboard Grief Encounters LGBT Bereavement Counselling Project
TRANS PRIMARY CARE
“21% of of trans respondents said that their specific needs were ignored or not taken into account when they accessed, or tried to access, healthcare services. 18% were subject to inappropriate curiosity and 18% said that they avoided treatment for fear of discrimination or intolerant reactions”……….National LGBT Survey
We gave a grant to The Clare Project as Seed funding to prepare the charity to bid for the contract to provide trans specific NHS primary health services. This will be a Brighton based service, with national importance
Whilst asking for acceptance in the wider community, we must also recognise that prejudice exists within our LGBT+ communities. This is especially true for People of colour. LGBT+ People of colour often also face rejection or exclusion from family and their wider ethnic communities.
I’ve used the acronym LGBT+ so far for brevity, but we must recognise that younger people, especially, have embraced the concept of a Queer community. So here we add a Q.
INTERSECTIONALITY AND LGBTQ+ PEOPLE OF COLOUR
- 32% of LGBTQ people have experienced some form of discrimination or poor treatment from others in the LGBT community. That number rises to 51% for those who are Black or Asian……….Stonewall/YouGov
- “There is a need for LGBTQ and BME third sector organisations to support QTPOC community building”……….University of Brighton
We have awarded a grant to initiate a monthly QTIPOC (Queer, Trans, Intersex People of Colour) Community meet up space, including creative workshops
We also believe that meetup groups are an excellent way to address social isolation, and have awarded a grant to the BAME/POC LGBTQ+ Network Meet Up Group
NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF SOCIAL ISOLATION IN LGBT AND HIV COMMUNITIES
- “Social connectedness keeps older adults healthy and helps them live longer”
- “LGBT older adults are twice as likely to live alone”
- “LGBT adults living with HIV also face high rates of isolation, which has been shown to have a negative impact on health and wellbeing, particularly cognitive function”……….SAGE Report
We awarded the following grants.
Lunch Positive. Weekly nutritious meal for people living with HIV
…plus five wellbeing projects
…plus a new Supper Club for Older People living with HIV
Older and Out monthly Lunch Club for LGBT Elders
The Sussex Beacon. Group work to empower people with HIV to live well
Sea Serpents LGBT Rugby Club for a Bursary Fund
Peer Action. Complementary Therapies, and Yoga Sessions for people living with HIV.
The Rainbow Chorus. Monthly session singing for pleasure
…. and BSL signed performances as Outreach to LGBT deaf community.
So that was the presentation..and this blog will be reporting back on these projects, and more over the next weeks and months.