AECC University College celebrates and recognises Pride Month this June, but the importance of championing and supporting the diversity and equality of our staff and students remains a year round commitment from the institution.
Pride Month takes place in June, which was when the Stonewall Riots took place, back in 1969. The riots were prompted by a raid which took place during the early morning at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, Manhattan. The LGBTQ+ community held a series of spontaneous, and often violent demonstrations to protest against the raid and calling for rights to protect the LGBTQ+ community. The riots served as a catalyst for the rights that some, but not all, have today. Over the years since the events, many gay rights organisations have been formed around the world to fight for the rights of LGBTQ+ people.
Pride is a way of celebrating the LGBT community and the significant progress that has been made, but it also highlights the work and change that still needs to take place.
AECC University College is proud of the diversity of its students and staff, promoting a welcoming and inclusive environment. The ASU Students’ Union have previously celebrated LGBTQ History Month and are introducing an LGBT Champion, alongside other Champions, as part of their strategic plan to better represent the diverse range of students on campus. The University College continuously provides opportunities to further train staff in areas of diversity and equality, and LGBT issues are considered in the conversations around support, student experience, and equality on campus. The institution is actively developing its culture on campus and within its community, ensuring a supportive and respectful place to work and study.
Karen Pichlmann, Academic Registrar, commented: “The work we’ve been implementing around promoting a positive campus culture means we have increased awareness for the need to support students and staff members so that everybody feels part of our inclusive community. This work is a key component in providing our staff and students with an environment where they can be their whole selves."
The University College's Student Services provide wellbeing appointments, helping students with practical applications to assist with daily wellbeing, meditation and coping strategies. Group support sessions and counselling appointments are also available to students, providing a safe space to talk about whatever issues students may be facing to an unbiased third party. Everything discussed with the friendly and welcoming Student Services team is completely confidential.
AECC University College have restyled their logo to include the LGBT flag throughout the month of June. BourneFree, Bournemouth’s Pride Festival, takes place 13 – 15 July 2018, with a Hawaiian Beach Party theme.
Over the Rainbow Bournemouth
Over the Rainbow is an NHS service in Bournemouth which provides health advice, support and information for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Over the Rainbow provides a range of services including counselling, peer support and 1 to 1 or group training.
Dorset Mind’s MindOut support group is a safe, confidential and accepting space for LGB and Trans people experiencing mental health issues. It offers recovery-based peer and staff support. There are currently two weekly MindOut support groups: One in Bournemouth and one in Weymouth.
Educational Action Challenging Homophobia (EACH) is an award-winning charity for people affected by homophobia and transphobia. EACH provides training and support in a variety of ways. Actionline is their helpline for young people. If you a young person who has been affected by homophobia and transphobia please call them on 0808 1000 143. Guidance is both professional and confidential. EACH also provides a range of training and consultancy services. Services are provided for a variety of organisations such as local councils, the Criminal Justice System and Youth Services.
TransUnite is a comprehensive resource for people in the UK searching for support in the transgender community. Our easy to use, mobile friendly directory connects you to an established network of trans support groups near you.
Space Youth Project
Space Youth Project is a group for young people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans or just unsure. They meet weekly throughout Dorset. You get the opportunity to meet other people from the LGBT community and make new friends, chat, go out, plan events and have fun.
Ricochet is a support group in Dorset which supports the family and friends of lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
Ryan Grimshaw (Mktg)