A Birmingham charity that supports the health and wellbeing of LGBT people has won a prestigious national award.
Birmingham LGBT has beaten more than 350 organisations from all over the UK to be one of the eight winners of the 2018 GSK IMPACT Awards, a national award that recognises charities that are doing excellent work to improve people’s health and wellbeing. The charity will receive £30,000 in funding as part of its prize, as well as expert support and development from The King’s Fund.
Birmingham LGBT runs a wide range of services to support LGBT people, who have higher rates of mental anxiety, substance use disorders and suicidal behaviour compared to the general population. Last year its Wellbeing Centre in Birmingham city centre had more than 7,000 visits, more than half of which were for its sexual health services. It has a particular focus on targeting sections of the LGBT community who might not otherwise access services, including LGBT refugees, homeless people and older people who are isolated or victims of domestic violence.
The charity has a good record of working with other charities and health providers, and has been invited by the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Trust to be one of the partners for Umbrella, the UK’s largest sexual health contract. It also builds leaders within the LGBT community through its Leadership Academy, which is open to people who are LGBT or running services for LGBT people.
Katie Pinnock, Director of UK and Ireland Charitable Partnerships at GSK, said: ‘Given that LGBT people have higher rates of mental health problems and can sometimes find it harder to access health services, Birmingham LGBT is doing much-needed work in offering a wide range of support for this community.
‘The judging panel was particularly impressed by the great efforts Birmingham LGBT has made to support some of the most marginalised LBGT communities, and this has helped maximise its impact.’
Steph Keeble, Director of Birmingham LGBT, said: ‘We are delighted to have won this award, as it is fantastic recognition of the work we have done in supporting LGBT people in Birmingham. In particular, it is great that the judges have highlighted our work in supporting some of the most vulnerable people, in particular, as this is a key focus for us.
‘We are also excited about the potential of the award to take us to the next level, both in terms of the financial contribution and the leadership development, and so enable us to do even more to support those who rely on our services.’
Developing leaders in the charity sector is an important aim of the GSK IMPACT Awards programme, which has now been running for more than 20 years, and Birmingham LGBT will have access to training and leadership development tailored to its needs. It will also be invited to join the GSK IMPACT Awards Network, a national network of almost 80 award-winning health and wellbeing charities working together to develop their leaders, find new ways of working, and support others.
Birmingham LGBT will receive its prize at a ceremony held at the Science Museum in London in May, along with seven other GSK IMPACT Award winners.