Out Together

Out Together

At a glance

Causes

  • Lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender

Other details

Organisation type: 
Charity
Geographical remit: 
Regional

Objectives

We are creating an intergenerational inclusive LGBTQ+ community across West Yorkshire, supporting its current seniors, and creating a permanent framework to benefit future older generations. According to the results of the 2021 Census, over 68000 people in West Yorkshire identified as LGBT+. Within that cohort, we focus on older generations as the main beneficiaries, but also provide volunteering opportunities for others, who benefit from having an increased sense of purpose by helping others.

We help LGBTQ+ seniors in West Yorkshire keep well, have fun and stay connected.

We combat social and digital exclusion and identify gaps in available support services. We are increasing community cohesion through volunteering and social activities, befriending and advocacy. We enlist support from within our community, and have introduced Club Out Together, a networking group for LGBTQ+ professionals who wish to help improve lives within our community.

Demographically, the population is ageing, increasing demands for support. Many are recovering from Covid. In the current economic and cultural environment institutional budgets are tightening and LGBTQ+ rights are under threat, so making support harder to find.

Older LGBTQ+ people share the same problems as their straight peers- healthcare disparities, isolation and loneliness, financial and legal concerns. However, many more live alone, lacking family and neighbourhood networks, an extra barrier to staying well and independent.  They are likely to be reticent about their sexuality, having lived through decades of not being open about who they are. All these factors contribute to greater physical and mental health problems such as dementia.

Our impact has been to reduce loneliness and isolation. We are LGBT+ specific, meaning that our members feel safe talking to each other because other people will understand them. Our regular social activities at safe places include weekly coffee mornings at an LGBTQ+ cafe, monthly meetings and lunch at Leeds Playhouse, monthly Sunday lunch, and for many these activities anchor their lives, giving them a sense of purpose. They have made new friends and are building their own 'family' networks to support each other.

Activities

We are developing a three-year plan to extend the scope and geographic spread of our interventions across our region.

We are introducing digital neighbourhoods, overcoming geographic and other barriers, so individuals with diverse orientations and identities can better connect, share experiences, and collaborate with each other to address priority needs. We are aiming to reduce the number of seniors who are digitally excluded.

We are creating greater awareness of the issues facing our community –

  • establishing Partners in Pride for larger organisations with an internal LGBTQ+ network who share our aims
  • harnessing the potential for professional individuals who can utilise their skills

Current opportunities

West Yorkshire, LS17 9DH

Out Together is a growing charity, building an inclusive intergenerational LGBTQ+ community across West Yorkshire, supporting its current seniors...