Words by Smiley Team
During Pride month – and beyond – it's important to know about the organisations and charities working hard to ensure the LGBTQ+ community can live happy, healthy and equal lives.
To help, we've put together 12 LGBTQ+ charities in the UK that you can find out more about, get involved with, and support. Enjoy!
This UK-based charity works to legalise and decriminalise homosexuality across the Commonwealth. Many countries across the Commonwealth still retain homophobic laws and practices that were implemented during Great Britain’s colonial regime, and the Kaleidoscope Trust are working to change that, and to protect LGBTQ+ people everywhere. You can find out more about donating, fundraising and volunteering on their website.
Hidayah UK supports LGBTQ+ Muslims in their journey through monthly events, educational workshops and mentoring programmes. They hold regular meetings all across the UK, with LGBTQ+ Muslims with lived experience providing support for others. There are application forms on their website for those who wish to be mentors or mentees. For more information on how to donate, volunteer or buy merchandise you can visit their website.
This mental health and wellbeing charity is run by members of the LGBTQ+ community, for members of the LGBTQ+ community, as well as those who may not identify under the LGBTQ+ umbrella. While their physical services are based in Brighton and Hove, their online services are available to LGBTQ+ people globally. According to their website, MindOut have also secured funds to further support QTIPoC (Queer, Trans and Intersex People of Colour), and are working hard to make their organisation an anti-racist one. You can find out more information on fundraising and volunteering on their website.
This is an LGBTQ+ military charity, supporting LGBTQ+ serving personnel, veterans and their families. Created on the 20th anniversary of the complete lifting of the ban on LGBTQ+ service personnel serving in the UK military, Fighting With Pride is a ‘lived experience charity’. It works closely with the government and Office for Veterans Affairs (OVA) to help restore service medals to LGBTQ+ service veterans and their next of kin. You can find out more about how to support them through donations on their website.
GALOP supports LGBTQ+ persons who have suffered any kind of abuse or violence. This includes domestic, physical or sexual abuse, hate crimes, conversion therapy and other kinds of abuse. They have three separate helplines geared towards domestic abuse, hate crimes and conversion therapy, and offer advocates and casework support for LGBTQ+ abuse sufferers, as well as much more. You can find out more information on donating, fundraising and volunteering on their website.
Mermaids UK supports gender diverse youth and their families. They provide help and guidance for young people, as well as their parents and guardians, and offer training for schools and other organisations. There is a helpline where you can speak to a trained member of the Mermaids team, as well as local groups which provide safe spaces for families with gender diverse kids. You can find out more information on donating, fundraising, volunteering and buying merchandise on their website.
BlkOut is a UK not for profit organisation run by Black, gay, male volunteers. The aim of the organisation is to give Black, gay men a space to speak openly about their experiences, to celebrate and share as they reflect on their commonalities and differences. There are regular meetings for those who wish to get involved and support each other emotionally. For more information on how to donate, volunteer or buy merchandise you can visit their website.
Stonewall has spent more than 30 years advocating for LGBTQ+ rights. Now that LGBTQ+ people have equal rights in the UK, Stonewall continues to campaign for positive change in public attitudes and public policy. You can find out more information on donating, fundraising, volunteering and buying merchandise on their website.
The Proud Trust works to support LGBTQ+ young people through youth groups, peer support, mentoring programmes and an online chat service. They help to connect LGBTQ+ youth through community events, and encourage schools and other organisations to learn more about supporting LGBTQ+ young people and their needs. They also provide support for the trusted adults of LGBTQ+ youth, and help them to learn more about how to help their young people. You can find out more information on donating, supporting and fundraising on their website.
AKT supports LGBTQ+ youth aged 16-25 who are facing or experiencing homelessness. They help LGBTQ+ youth find safe homes and assist them into employment, education and training, and even provide an emergency, temporary accommodation service. You can find out more about how to support them through donation, volunteering and fundraising on their website.
LGBT HERO focuses on the mental wellbeing and sexual health of LGBTQ+ people, and correcting health and social inequalities. They are the founders of GMFA, the sexual health service for gay, bi and trans men who sleep with men, offering information, advice and support. They offer support and advice on preventing and living with HIV. You can find out more about how to support them through donation and fundraising on their website.
Just Like Us is a charity that supports young LGBTQ+ people by going into schools and giving talks on allyship and awareness of LGBTQ+ issues. They also help to set up pride groups in schools for members of the LGBTQ+ community and allies, and organise the nation-wide Diversity Week to celebrate LGBTQ+ equality in primary and secondary schools. You can find out more about how to support them through donation and volunteering on their website.