The LGBT Safe and Supportive Schools Project model: BeLonG To and HSE’s venture to create safe, supportive and fully inclusive schools for young LGBT students
Wednesday 11th May sees the launch by Eamon McGee, the Donegal GAA star, of the LGBT Safe and Supportive Schools Project delivered in Donegal. This was established to develop and test a Whole School Community Model designed to create schools that are fully inclusive and supportive of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) young people.
The project consists of a model that involves working with teachers, parents, students and the broader community to build a safe and supportive environment for LGBT young people.
The aim of the project is to encourage schools nationwide to address homophobic/transphobic bullying through the use of the elements of the model and toolkit, which has been carefully evaluated as a result of this pilot project.
The project was delivered by BeLonG To and the Health Promotion & Improvement Department – Health and Wellbeing Division (HSE West), with the support of the two schools in the pilot scheme which ran during the 2013/14 academic year.
Staff from BeLonG To and HSE Health Promotion & Improvement provided whole staff workshops; specific training to SPHE teachers; information sessions for the Parents Associations, Boards of Management, and community organisations; access to resource materials; advice on policy development in keeping with the revised Department of Education Anti-Bullying Action Plan and Procedures; and ongoing telephone support.
Homophobic and transphobic bullying is one of the most common form of bullying experienced by young people. This project aims to raise the issue of bullying in schools and the impact on mental health – post the recent LGBTIreland report launch – key findings available here: http://belongto.org/attachments/250_Key_Findings-TheLGBTIrelandreport.pdf
BeLonG To is the national organisation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered (LGBT) young people, aged between 14 and 23.
Twitter: @BeLonG_To #BSafe&Supportive