Allsorts Youth Project is committed to creating an organisation that is inclusive, safe, understanding and built by the ideas and experiences of our wonderfully diverse LGBT+ community.
By making sure we listen to you, the young people and families at Allsorts, we can make sure that our services are tailored to meet your needs, and feel welcoming and fun for everyone. We do not claim to be all-knowing experts of how LGBT+ identities intersect and interact with other identities or experiences. But, we are growing and striving to create spaces that all LGBT+ children, young people and their families, feel safe, listened to and supported in. Our pledge to you is that we will;
We will keep learning and be open to change. As an employer, Allsorts provides mandatory training for our team in a wide range of areas surrounding diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB). We articulate clearly to staff, volunteers and trustees that we are building a culture that challenges and changes practices to ensure we are as accessible as possible to all LGBT+ people, and we encourage feedback on these topics across the project at all times.
Strive for Change
We pledge to put our learning into practice as we strive for change. Allsorts’ understanding of DEIB is a continuous process that needs conscious attention. We will provide discussion sessions for staff, volunteers and trustees to reflect on their learnings and professional experiences within Allsorts’ spaces to ensure learnings are contextualised, shared and built upon.We know that societally and organisationally we have a long way to go, but we are committed to our continued learning and will to continue to develop spaces in which all LGBT+ children, young people, families, staff, volunteers and trustees feel welcome, listened to, and free to be themselves.
Allsorts Youth Project has, for many years, fallen short on its responsibilities to provide spaces in which young LGBT+ people of colour feel represented and understood. As a result, we understand that young people of colour and local LGBT+ PoC communities have been reluctant to engage in our spaces.
To counter this, we have consulted with a range of stakeholders to identify what needs to change at Allsorts. This is an ongoing, fluid process that requires thorough reflections, learning, training and the development of appropriate support structures to be in place and for those structures and training sessions to change and grow with feedback from the experiences of PoC young people, staff, volunteers and trustees.
PoC service users and staff often leave the most ‘well-meaning’ organisations because the policies in place to support them are simply not enacted in practice. Also being one of the ‘only representatives’ of a minority group in any organisation can result in feeling invisible and unheard, or being made to feel totally responsible for all issues and work associated with that identity. As LGBT+ people, we know this only too well, which is another reason why we are committed to becoming an anti-racist organisation.
We have made some important steps forward but acknowledge that we still have some way to go. In order to create an anti-racist organisation Allsorts has adopted the eight principles, from the "Home Truths: Undoing racism and delivering real diversity in the charity sector" report to ensure that;
We are committed to creating safer spaces for LGBT+ PoC who are current or prospective service users, employees, volunteers and partners. Therefore, we will;
At Allsorts, we value allyship alongside inclusion. An ‘ally’ is someone who supports people who are discriminated against, despite not belonging to that group themselves. We run allyship workshops in our groups, to encourage our young people, and their families, to understand more about intersecting identities within our LGBT+ community.
If you are interested in learning more, please read our ‘Unboxing our Identities’ resource, which was written to inform and highlight what life may be like for someone who is a person of colour and LGBT+.
We've also produced a range of resources called Allsorts of Visibility which celebrate LGBT+ people of colour from across the globe!
Feeling represented, meeting other people like you, and being mentored by caring and representative adult role models are all vital ingredients in cultivating a community, encouraging friendships and improving self-esteem for all young people.
Allsorts provides a range of activities and trips for 16-21 year olds who are LGBT+ and identify as PoC and/or with a mixed heritage/identity. The sessions are led by LGBT+ PoC. You can find out more about the Allsorts YPoC activities here, or contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.