Sage: For older (50+) LGBT people who live and socialise in Leeds.
The Sage project offers activities for older LGBT people, it is a partnership project between Age UK Leeds and Yorkshire MESMAC (http://www.mesmac.co.uk/) and is part of the Lottery funded Leeds Older Peoples Forum’s initiative Time to Shine (https://timetoshineleeds.org ).
Sage produces a quarterly Newsletter promoting Sage activities as well as other opportunities which may be of interest to older LGBT people. Anyone can receive the newsletter via email by contacting Richard Rawlings the Community Development Worker (details below), we can also send it out in the mail to anyone who can't access the internet.
Older LGBT people are participating and guiding the project in various volunteer roles alongside younger people. We want to thank all our volunteers as the project continues to benefit from the fantastic contribution they make, get in touch if you want to find out more about becoming a Sage volunteer.
The twice monthly Sage Drop IN session is very popular and provides a safe, supported opportunity for older LGBT people to socialise in an informal and welcoming space at Yorkshire MESMAC.
We also have a new support group for older Trans people starting on 10th July
Raising awareness about the issues faced by older LGBT people has been another way Sage has addressed social isolation by participating in research, delivering training, talks and workshops with professionals and in the community.
For the last two years at Pride, Sage offered a mellow space for older LGBT people and friends to socialise, it was a great success and we want to build on this further at Leeds Pride in 2018.
LGBT social history is of interest to many older LGBT people and so Yorkshire MESMAC’s new project, funded by Heritage Lottery Fund, Queer Stories will also be offering opportunities for participation and intergenerational connections as the project unfolds next year Sage volunteers Roy and John recently featured in an article in the Yorkshire Evening Post which explores the importance of LGBT social history and the barriers faced by many older LGBT people.(link to article http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news/a-queer-story-of-life-and-love-leeds-couple-s-hopes-and-fears-for-the-grey-and-gay-generation-1-8437235
(LGBT: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender)