"Now, more than ever, this fund is critical to ensuring the survival of groups who make such a large impact on the people they support."
Andrew Websdale, Regional Head, Barclays Spectrum
LCR Pride Foundation has today revealed the first recipients of grants from its £20,000 Community Fund, which was launched in June for projects supporting the LGBT+ community in the Liverpool City Region.
The first tranche of funding, supported by Barclays, comes from reserves initially allocated to deliver the city region’s Pride in Liverpool celebrations, which were cancelled due to the ongoing pandemic. The funding was separated into three funds, an Open Fund, Film Fund and an Inclusive Physical Activity and Sport Fund.
The first 16 recipients include a city-based LGBT+ heritage tour, a campaign to increase the number of organisations providing gender neutral toilet facilities, a ‘Big Irish Gay-lí’ and the creation of a multi-gender inclusive hockey squad.
Liverpool TDoV - Pool Together
‘Pool Together’ is a social event, based around informal games of pool, designed celebrate trans identities and confront prejudice aimed at trans women in particular, following claims that their existence was diluting the identity of lesbian women. ‘Pool Together’ highlights the existence and validity of our city region’s trans community. It also raises awareness in both the LGBT+ and wider community that lesbian, transgender and gender non-conforming people happily and willingly share the same social spaces, events and experiences, breaking down barriers.
Comics Youth - Queer Youth Toolkit
Youth-led creative community organisation, Comics Youth, will create a Queer Youth Toolkit to provide targeted support, guidance and financial budget to one cohort of trans young people aged 16-25 over a 12-week period to engage in an exciting social action project to plan, develop and curate a Trans Youth Toolkit, which will then be compiled into a 32-page zine and distributed to LGBTQIA youth across the Liverpool City Region.
Telling Tales - A Conversational Storytelling Event
Telling Tales offers a platform to share and amplify the unheard stories of LGBTQ+ people, particularly those of under-represented communities such as trans and QTIBPOC (Queer Trans, Intersex, Bisexual Persons of Colour) people. The funding provided will facilitate a number of workshops and two events - Telling Tales: Let’s Get Physical LGBTQ+ focusing on the LGBTQ+ experience of sport and Telling Tales: Tainted Love exploring the issues of love gone wrong, between family, friends and partners. Telling Tales is not a performance and it welcomes contributions from people who are not professional speakers, actors or poets. The events empower speakers to own their personal stories and histories, provide a cathartic experience for audience members when stories are relatable and educate people on the diversity of the LGBTQ+ community.
Theatre In The Rough Festival - Change in a Box
‘Change in a Box’ is a creative learning resource for young people that promotes social cohesion and active citizenship. It is a technology-free exploration of history, activism, and arts & crafts. We are living through increasingly extraordinary, confusing times and ‘Change in a Box’ equips young people with the tools they need to stand up, speak out, share their experiences and be counted.
Homotopia - Queer Youth Performance
Homotopia will work with two groups of LGBTQIA young people (25 in total), aged 12-15 and 16-25 to produce a socially impactful performance and engagement project that will be shown at Homotopia Festival 2020, recruited from youth groups across the city region and the festival’s schools partners. The project will focus on this Homotopia’s 2020 festival theme of ‘allyship’ within the LGBTQIA spectrum, advocating for the whole and specific parts of the community, in particular trans and QTIBPOC (Queer Trans, Intersex, Bisexual Persons of Colour).
Kerry McSweeney & Jessica Scott - Liverpool Loves You Mural
The creation of a piece of artwork that will be a celebration of the diverse community in Liverpool, intended to encourage a sense of togetherness, acceptance and of course… PRIDE. Designed around the centrepiece of typography reading “Liverpool Loves You”, there will be scenes of a vibrant city with a diverse crowd of people going about their daily lives, with a particular emphasis on the LGBTQ+ community. It will feature an eclectic mix of Liverpool’s most iconic landmarks, nods to gay culture and the city’s LGBTQ+ history.
Naissance Spark CIC - LGBT+ Heritage and History Tour of Liverpool
The creation of a new walking tour experience based on the cultural history and heritage of Liverpool's LGBT+ community, which would be open to all and curated in partnership with libraries, museums and city archives. Discussions will be held with museums and community leaders as part of the research and the resulting tour would help the city to come together, understand and embrace the role that the LBGT+ community has had in shaping modern-day Liverpool.
Merseyside LGBT+ - Social, Reading & Creative Writing Groups
Support for a Merseyside-wide LGBT+ social group, creative writing group and reading group, which currently meets using digital and social media, but will return to physical events once restrictions allow. The groups are characterised by the diversity of those supported. Accessed by a diverse range of people, including a significant number of trans people, the groups provide a safe space for many.
Liverpool TDoV - Toilets for All
A campaign to increase the number of organisations providing gender neutral toilet facilities that are fit for purpose for trans and gender non-conforming people, challenging the current fears around the use of public spaces regarding gender diverse people. A diverse group of organisations, large and small, will be approached to document the outcomes of the campaign and it will be twin tracked with an Action Research framework. This will ask the organisations involved to take part in a reflective process and share case studies about if there have been any positive/ negative impacts of having gender neutral toilets, to provide concrete evidence dispelling any notions of ‘risk’.
I See Gay People - Pascal O’Loughlin and Tim Brunsden of Light Factory
The film I See Gay People will be filmed in the decaying dockside areas around Birkenhead. Combining repurposed ambient sound and stark industrial imagery, the film will reflect on the complexities of a queer relationship that has left an indelible mark on the life of the protagonist. But is that mark a positive or negative one? Perhaps our liberation lies in permitting ourselves to embrace and learn from the confusion and messiness of our desires. Research has shown that LGBTQ people have higher levels of depression, anxiety, addiction and suicidal thoughts. Exploring the impact of societal oppressions on the integrity of its characters (including the legacy of section 28 and the AIDS crisis), the film will foster opportunities for positive discussion and exploration of how we as a community can liberate ourselves. Through its beautiful decaying landscapes, ‘I see gay people’ will honour our potential to change, delving into the space between the real and imagined world, where ultimately our humanity is revealed.
Trans Youth - Trans Truth - GYRO
The film will be a series of up to five trans narratives, made with five trans young people aged between 17-25 years old. It will be co-facilitated by trans young people speaking about their lived experiences - positive and negative - of education, health and social support in Merseyside. Local suppliers and trans people with relevant skills will be used to film and produce the project and the overview, safeguarding, pastoral support and contacts regarding trans youth will be held by YPAS/GYRO. The film will be used by YPAS as an informal educational resource for professionals working with children and young people across the education, health and social care sectors, helping to reduce stigma, bust the myths, increase the capacity of appropriate trans youth support across the city and tackle hate crime.
Betty & Jean - Elinor Randle & Tmesis Theatre
A love story that never was, between two women now in their 70s and 80s. Betty and Jean fell in love, but never made a life together because being lesbian wasn't an accepted or known way to live when they were younger. After years of not being in contact, they meet in Liverpool, on a bench by the Mersey, where they said goodbye to one another 50 years earlier. Switching between the present scene and their younger versions, playing out the painful 'goodbye', mixing minimal dialogue with expressive movement. Working with local actors/physical performers and a local filmmaker, Jane Farley, the film will focus on the often-underrepresented stories of older gay women. Research for the film will include interviewing older lesbian women about their experiences, those who came 'out' and those that couldn't.
INCLUSIVE PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND SPORT FUND
West Derby Hockey Club - Multi-Gender Hockey Squad
Project to establish a multi-gender hockey squad and provide the appropriate resources and training sessions. Locally, mixed hockey squads only comprise two genders and competitive leagues are strictly gender designated. This project aims to create a diverse and inclusive squad to offer competitive hockey to all in Liverpool. It will also include the creation of an LGBTQ+ empowerment wall inside the clubhouse, visible to all visitors to the club and promoting diversity in sports with real testimonies from professional athletes. The club will also show an external banner supporting the LGTBQ+ community that will be visible to the general public.
Liverpool Frontrunners - Inclusive Running
Awareness-driving campaign to encourage participation in running in the LGBTQ+ community throughout the Liverpool City Region. Liverpool Frontrunners recognise the barriers to participation in sport faced by the LGBT+ community but seek to break these down and prove that anyone can do it. The project will feature new promotional media and a targeted social media campaign.
Liverpool Irish LGBT+ - The Big Irish Gay-lí
A cèilidh event run by the Liverpool Irish LGBT+ group under Comhaltas in Britain and supported by the Liverpool Irish Centre including Sláinte Le Chéile, the Centre’s Health and Wellbeing Project and Irish Community Care, a Liverpool-based charity working to ensure well informed, empowered and vibrant Irish and Irish Traveller communities across the North West. LCR Pride Foundation, Sahir House, Armistead Centre and Merseyside Police Community Liaison officer/LGBT+ network will also be in attendance to set up stalls and provide advice.
GYRO - LGBTQ+ Youth Swimming Sessions
The provision of swimming sessions for LGBTQ+ young people, with a particular emphasis on transgender and non-binary young people, building upon previous trans specific swimming sessions funded by the Mayoral Sports Active Fund. LGBTQ+ young people and particularly trans young people, face multiple barriers in accessing sport and physical activity (Pride Sports, 2016). LGBTQ+ young people also report significantly higher mental health problems than their cisgender peers (Youth Chances, 2014). This project aims to re-connect LGBTQ+ young people with a sport that they have enjoyed previously, or help them to connect to a sport that they have been afraid off or excluded from trying. It also seeks to use physical activity as a route to improve young people’s mental health and well-being, increasing their confidence and ability to engage in future sport and physical activity.
All projects must be completed, or on track to be completed, by April 2021. The foundation has also confirmed that another tranche of funding will be released in coming months.
Speaking of the applications, Lewis Collins, Chair of the LCR Pride Foundation Board of Directors, said: “We received so many fantastic submissions from a wide range of individuals and organisations that are delivering initiatives with the power to make a huge difference to the lives of LGBT+ people in the city region.
“Allocating the funds was a difficult task as the standard of the applications was extremely high. We want to thank everyone who applied for the work that they are doing in our region and congratulate those who were successful in this round. We are looking forward to supporting these projects as they develop and come to fruition over the coming months.
“We would also like to thank Barclays for its support during a challenging year. Creating a community fund has always been an important aim for the foundation and with Barclays support we have been able to realise that goal.”
Andrew Websdale, Regional Head of Barclays Spectrum, Barclays LGBT+ colleague network said: “We are delighted to support both the Young at Heart 2020 Digital Programme and the LCR Pride Foundation Community Fund. Now, more than ever, this fund is critical to ensuring the survival of groups who make such a large impact on the people they support. We’re looking forward to seeing the successful projects develop and wish them the best of luck.”
To find out more about the Community Fund, including criteria and eligibility and to watch for future announcements, visit: www.lcrpride.co.uk/fund
For more information on LCR Pride Foundation, visit: www.lcrpride.co.uk