Celebrating LGBT History Month at the Big Lottery Fund
February in the UK marks LGBT History Month, an annual event which shines a light on the often-overlooked histories of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) people.
At the Big Lottery Fund, we’re taking this opportunity to celebrate the wide range of LGBT projects we support across the country, from small community groups to large scale initiatives that support LGBT people young and old to overcome barriers, and live fulfilling and creative lives. Check out our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts for photos, stories and top application tips from projects across the country.
For this blog, we spoke to two organisations who have been funded through our Reaching Communities programme, LGBT Foundation and The Proud Trust, about the top tips and advice they have for other LGBT organisations looking to apply. In the words of The Proud Trust – “Don’t be afraid to talk about sexuality and gender on your application, the Big Lottery Fund have a positive attitude to LGBT needs and inclusion!”
Involve the community
LGBT Foundation, who received £299,742 for their Well Women project to improve the health and wellbeing of lesbian and bisexual women, emphasise the need to involve the community: “Speak to the people you want to support – they might be able to offer some great insight or ideas which would improve your project. You could set up a stakeholder group, hold a focus group, do some twitter engagement or do a short survey – it could make or break your project, so invest as much time as possible into ensuring your project reflects the needs of the people you want to support.”
The Proud Trust, who received £473,123 for their project supporting LGBT youth to overcome the barriers posed by homophobia, biphobia and transphobia, highlight the importance of evidencing your
application: “Look online for evidence to show the need for your work. Lots of Universities, local authorities and voluntary sector groups have done research about LGBT people, which can help highlight the needs of your group, e.g. Queer Futures (Dept of Health), Youth Chances (Metro), How You Can Help Us (The Proud Trust).”
LGBT Foundation gave similar advice: “Evidencing your project need is key, however when it comes to robust research about the needs of LGBT people in particular, it can sometimes be very difficult to get your hands on up to date or large scale data. However, LGBT Foundation have handily pulled together a lot of research and statistics in the Evidence Exchange which holds thousands of statistics about LGBT communities.”
Explain your terminology!
The Proud Trust advise applicants to “put things in plain English to help the person reading your application understand – don’t assume the person reading the application knows what ‘non-binary’ or ‘trans-masculine’ means, and always explain acronyms the first time you use them, especially long ones like LGBTQUIA!”
What about smaller grants?
“If you want to put on something like a training course or an event, you can apply to Awards for All for the money, even if you are a small group. You don’t even have to be a registered charity.” say On Road Media, who were awarded £10,000 for their trans awareness project, All About Trans.
If you have a small scale project to fund, you can apply to our Awards for All programme, which awards small grants of up to £10,000 to voluntary and community groups. Many LGBT organisations sent in their top tips for applying to Awards for All – find more on our Instagram account.