WE ARE RECRUITING VOLUNTEERS TO HELP US SUPPORT LGBT+ PEOPLE ACROSS WARWICKSHIRE. VISIT THE VOLUNTEER PAGE TO FIND OUT MORE.

About

Mission


Warwickshire Pride is the primary LGBT+ organisation in Warwickshire. We run a number of services and social events for LGBT+ people across the county. Our mission is:


"to ensure that all people feel valued and included in society, regardless of sexuality or gender identity"


We also have the following objectives, that are for the benefit of LGBT+ people:


1.To preserve and protect the physical and mental health of such people, in particular, but not exclusively through:

a. The provision of information, guidance and emotional support;

b. Safe, social meeting spaces where people can explore verbally and express their sexual orientation or gender identity.


2.The promotion of equality and diversity in the Warwickshire area for the public benefit by:

a. The elimination of discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity;

b. Working in partnership with other providers and community groups to raise awareness of LGBT+ issues, and the needs of LGBT+ young people and adults;

c. Advancing education and raising awareness in equality and diversity, with a focus on sexual orientation and gender identity.



History


The charity was founded in 2011 and started life as an LGBT+ youth group. That's all it was ever going to be. However, over time demand for other services and support started to grow and everything snowballed from there. The first Warwickshire Pride festival took place on Saturday 31st August 2013 and was the first event of its kind in Warwickshire. It was organised by local LGBT+ activist and Chair of Warwickshire Pride, Daniel Browne, who felt that Warwickshire was lagging behind the rest of the country when it came to LGBT+ representation. Daniel had the vision for Warwickshire Pride upon waking up one morning and told himself that he was going to put on a Pride festival in exactly three month's time and that it would be fabulous. People thought it would never happen and a local councillor wrote to say there are no gay people in Warwickshire. It did happen and around 2,000 people came out to support the first Warwickshire Pride.


Since then, Warwickshire Pride has continued to go from strength to strength; getting bigger and better each year, while retaining its identity as a grassroots, community Pride event. Warwickshire Pride is now an established festival in Warwickshire's event calendar, welcoming thousands of people each year for a celebration of LGBT+ culture.


A range of support services, groups and social activities also take place all year round across Warwickshire, providing safe, welcoming, inclusive, accessible spaces for LGBT+ people.


Warwickshire Pride is managed by a board of trustees and has a team of fantastic volunteers who help to run the services and activities. Further information can be found on the Charity Commission website.



Frequently Asked Questions About the Warwickshire Pride Festival


What time is Warwickshire Pride on? The festival will run on Saturday 20th August 2022 between 11:00am - 6:00pm.

How much does it cost? Warwickshire Pride is completely FREE to attend. We believe in Pride celebrations being free for all people to enjoy.

Will it be safe for children to take children? Of course. Warwickshire Pride is something that people of all ages can celebrate. We are a completely family friendly festival and have a dedicated family area.

Can I bring my dog? Well behaved dogs are welcome, as long as they are kept on a lead and all mess is cleaned up.

Will there be alcohol? There will be a licensed bars selling a variety of alcoholic drinks. The bar will have a Challenge 25 policy in action on the day, so bring ID with you if you're lucky enough to look under 25. We discourage people from bringing their own alcohol due to the Pump Room Gardens being an alcohol free zone (apart from our licensed bar, of course). Anyone who is heavily under the influence of alcohol will be asked to leave the Warwickshire Pride site in order to maintain the family friendly atmosphere.

I'm not LGBT+... Can I still come? Absolutely. It may be an LGBT+ festival, but we welcome and embrace all people.

Where is Warwickshire Pride happening?

The festival takes place at the Pump Room Gardens, Leamington Spa, CV32 4AA.

Where can I park my car? Parking is available at St Peter's multi-storey car park on Augusta Place (Postcode: CV32 5EL). The car park is a one minute walk from the Pump Room Gardens where Warwickshire Pride takes place. It costs a maximum of £4.50 for the whole day.

Is the site accessible? Yes. The Pump Room Gardens is fully accessible and we work with disability groups to ensure that Warwickshire Pride continues to be accessible for people with physical and learning disabilities.



Meet the Trustees


DAN


Hi, I'm Dan and I am the founder and Chair of Warwickshire Pride. I've worked since 2011 to make Warwickshire a more accepting, safe and welcoming place for LGBT+ people. From being told that there are no gay people in Warwickshire and that Warwickshire Pride will fail, it's great to see how far we have come since then.


I identify as gay and my pronouns are he/him. I was born in Leamington and still live locally. I first came out at 15 and have come out to someone every year since then, which means I've been coming out for over 20 years so far.


Warwickshire Pride started as a weekly LGBT+ youth group. That's all it was going to be. But then many people started getting in touch to say they needed support and spoke of the issues they face. It fired me up and is part of why I'm so passionate about dragging Warwickshire into the 21st Century and ensuring it becomes as LGBT+ friendly as possible.


Something else I'm passionate about is using my platform and privilege to support minorities within the LGBT+ community. For example, ensuring that the charity is an inclusive and representative as possible - that's from the board of trustees, to the team of volunteers, and in the services we provide. Inclusion and accessiblity are at the heart of what we do. Supporting intersectional identities falls within that. As someone who is gay and also mixed race, I know what it's like to face stigma and discrimination from within my own communities as well as externally.


There's a fantastic team of trustees and volunteers involved in Warwickshire Pride and it's an honour to lead a charity that's doing some really good, life changing work. Do get involved if you want to help make a difference.


Away from Pride I'm a hypnotherapist, so helping people is very much part of who I am. I love food, horror films, 80s music and Star Trek.


PENNY


I got involved with Warwickshire Pride after being moved to take part in the march as part of Shakespeare’s birthday celebrations that was prompted by a series of nasty homophobic incidents in Stratford-upon-Avon, where I live. Shortly after that, I volunteered to be a trustee.


Warwickshire is a small County - a little like Cornwall where I’m from - and whilst LGBT+ rights have got better in my lifetime, the fact that there’s still hate and prejudice in any civilised society, is unacceptable.


I came out when I was 30 and I am very aware that my journey has been very different to other LGBT+ people but at this point in my life, I am in a good position to be able to raise awareness and help support the community of which I’m part of.


The trustees of Warwickshire Pride are a really diverse group of people, from all walks of life and with unique experiences and I’ve probably got more from working with them than I’ll ever be able to provide. It’s great to be able to work as part of a really diverse team of people and I would encourage anyone, that if they’re passionate about something, to do the same and volunteer.


HEALEY


Hi, my name is Healey. I came across Warwickshire Pride in 2013 at the Peace Festival. They had a stall there. Back then Warwickshire Pride was just a youth group called Push Projects for young LGBT+ people. I was a youth member at the time. I then became a volunteer as I was getting too old for the group. I became a trustee in 2016 and I love what I do.


I run some of the Pride services such as the coffee social, parents group, the youth group and so on.


I am also a drag queen called Sassi Afrika. I started drag in 2013 at the first Warwickshire Pride. Since then I have released albums of original music which have sold in over 60 countries around the world. All the royalties get donated to Warwickshire Pride.


I have learning disabilities and cerebral palsy but I never let that stop me from doing what I want to do. I focus on my ability.


I love what I do and I love getting stuck in with things by helping, supporting and giving back to LGBT+ people in our community.


NUKEY

Hi! I'm Nukey and I joined Warwickshire Pride looking for a tangible, practical and impactful way to support my local community and its diversity, which is something I'm incredibly passionate about and could talk about for hours.


I've always considered myself an ally to individuals who identify as LGBTQ. Since I was young some of my closest friends have come from this community and have taught me so much about the beauty of being our authentic selves alongside the challenges in a society that wants to put us all in boxes.


As I've gotten older, the concept of active, vocal allyship is one I have taken incredibly seriously and becoming a Trustee has given me the opportunity to do so in a meaningful way for a fantastic charity. I think it's really important that we don't see the necessity of providing support, campaigning on issues and being bold about causes as just the responsibility of others. I'm a cis female with pronouns of she/her and I think it's really important that people like me contribute to organisations that promote the full spectrum of diversity and equality.


I'm looking forward to how much more I can learn from the incredible Trustees, Volunteers and supporters of Warwickshire Pride. Being a Trustee will hopefully give me the opportunity to find out first hand whilst getting exposed to the amazing people who make Warwickshire Pride what it is.