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42nd Street & Let’s Go: Children in Need Funds Online LGBTQ Project

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CHILDREN IN NEED GRANT FOR MANCHESTER’S LGBTQ YOUNG PEOPLE.

Manchester’s young LGBTQ* community will benefit from a grant from the BBC’s Children in Need, thanks to two local charities.

4nd Street and Lets Go have secured funding of over £100,000 for a project to challenge isolation and loneliness amongst 13-18 year olds across Greater Manchester.

The project will use creative social media to engage LGBTQ young people across the city, developing their skills, enabling friendships and improving mental wellbeing.

Simone Spray, CEO of 42nd Street, says: We’re delighted to be working alongside Lets Go on this groundbreaking project, funded by Children in Need. Having listened to the experiences of LGBTQ young people, it’s clear that they can often feel isolated as they work through their emotions and feelings, which can lead to a negative impact on their emotional health and wellbeing. This project will address that by creating safe, relevant digital solutions using the latest technology – informed and steered by the young people themselves.”

The project will last for three years and will involve weekly group work sessions at 4nd Street’s Manchester base ‘The Space’ on Great Ancoats Street, as well as with LGBTQ groups across the region.

Karen Shannon, Director of Lets Go, adds: “This project will create a safe online space where young LGBTQ people can share their experiences, gain peer support and use creative methods to explore their identity. We’re really looking forward to working with young people in a creative way using social media, new digital tools and a new web platform that will connect them, as well as support them. This initiative will benefit hundreds of young people in the region and many more who use it online.”

The grant will fund a Mental Health Practitioner and a Digital Engagement Coordinator, sessional artists, computer equipment, web making, trips, and volunteer expenses.

Simone concludes: “Mental health issues for young people are increasing, with demand for our services doubling over the last two years – and that’s only the tip of iceberg. This project is a real opportunity to explore new ways of working that will support some of our most vulnerable young people at a critical time in their lives.”

* lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and questioning

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Lets Go was the first art and media service in the UK to spin out of a local authority and now operates as a community interest company and public service mutual. Working with local communities, the organisation uses art and creativity to inspire the Greater Manchester community, helping people to create a positive change in society.

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42nd Street is an innovative Greater Manchester charity with 35 years’ experience of providing free and confidential support to young people aged 11- 25 who are experiencing mental health difficulties.

Further info:

Ruth Wilson

07881 022 733

rw@ruthwilsonpr.co.uk