THIS IS an unusual sight for me at 5pm on a weekday – our front door!
As co-ordinator of the UK’s longest running LGBT youth group, I work late at least two evenings a week. This week we are increasing to opening three times a week, for the first time in its 36 year history.
In the last three years, the group has more than doubled in size, and we have begun working with 13-16 year olds. We currently support up to 60 young people aged 13-25 each week.
This week I am leading all three of the new groups for the next three evenings, presenting at a development day on Friday and on Saturday at an event to celebrate the freedom of a young asylum seeker from the United Arab Emirates, where he could face up to 14 years in prison for being gay. His request for asylum was originally denied, but he successfully appealed and has won the right to remain in the UK.
I am very proud of him and it is amazing to see the transformation in him in the time we have known him. He is a strong and confident young man who is making an excellent contribution to our community, so much so that he was recently nominated for a ‘Young Person of the Year’ award.