LGBT HERO at Pride in London decision
A message from our CEO, Ian Howley.
Dear LGBT HERO supporters and volunteers
Every year, Pride in London is a big event for us. It’s a way for LGBT HERO to celebrate with our volunteers and supporters while appreciating the big success both GMFA and OutLife has achieved over the last year. However, success brings more work and more work means an overstretched team becomes even further stretched.
That’s why for this year, the LGBT HERO board has made the decision not to participate in Pride in London. We didn’t come to this decision lightly and it’s not a political or controversial decision either. Frankly, we’ve got too much going on.
Since last year we have lost our Community Fundraiser, Michael, who normally organises Pride, RVT Sports Day and World AIDS Day events. We have not been in a position to replace him, meaning all those tasks needed to be split between current members of staff. We have also been successful in gaining new contracts from HIV and LGBT funding sources which has already increased the work load of the organisation and fulfilling those contracts are top priority for us. In the coming months our small team needs to work on the following;
Me. Him. Us Black MSM HIV testing campaign - ongoing
Me. Him. Us South Asian MSM HIV testing campaign – launch in September
Chemsex awareness project and campaign – beginning this month
LGBTQ+ London Mapping service and launch in July
OutLife content development programme – beginning this month
OutLife’s LGBTQ+ suicide prevention campaign due to launch in September
Lambeth Whole System Approach which includes Trans Awareness Training and a round table event in September
RVT Sports Day in August
RiSE partnership, which includes GMFA groupwork and chemsex workshops.
And ongoing contract bidding to secure additional funding for both GMFA and OutLife
And we’re doing this as a team of five people in a small office in Lambeth. Some larger organisations with much more staff do not have this much on in such a short period of time.
The LGBT HERO board have made the decision not to march in Pride in London this year as so we can focus on the projects that we are funded to do and make sure RVT Sports Day is bigger and better than ever.
Although the march itself is only a few hours, there's a lot of work behind the scenes to make sure we have a great event. We're gutted, and for a while we thought we'd be able to manage it, but when we looked at what we needed to do to prepare, we knew we wouldn't be able to do Pride justice and could endanger the success of some of our other work.
I know lots of you really look forward to marching with us. I hope it’s a one off and that by this time next year we will be more settled and can return as a stronger organisation.
If you have any questions or comments please don’t hesitate to contact me. In the meantime, please keep on supporting the work we do. It’s important for us five here to know that we can rely on you when we need you and when you need us.
We hope to see you all at RVT Sports Day in August.
LGBT HERO - the Health Equality and Rights Organisation for LGBTQ+ people.
LGBT HERO is the parent organisation of:
GMFA – the gay men’s health project.
OutLife – for a happier, healthier LGBTQ+ community.
Unit 22, The Link.
49 Effra Road
(020) 7738 6872 (General)
(020) 3463 2484 (Direct)
Twitter: @Ian Howley
Health Equality and Rights Organisation (aka HERO / LGBT HERO)
Registered Charity No: 1076854
Company limited by guarantee 2702133