I am so incredibly excited as we launch into our new financial year at akt.

Following a strong performance in our fundraising thanks to your support, we are now ready to launch several new programmes and initiatives to ensure we prevent homelessness and achieve safe homes and better futures for LGBTQ+ young people. This includes:

  • In June we open our new 'young people's hub' in London. Based on the ground floor of our new base, the hub - which is being co-created in consultation with young people - will provide a range of new support and group activities for young people to participate in alongside their peers. We are also on the move in Newcastle to a new more centrally located base where young people can more easily access our service - also watch out for our satellite work across the north east to increase our reach.
  • In July we will be up and running in the southwest with our Bristol partners OTR, launching a pilot service to scope and deliver support to young people facing homelessness in a region with high rates of homelessness and currently has no specialist support for LGBTQ+ young people.
  • This Summer across Greater Manchester and South Yorkshire we will be piloting our latest digital service - an online toolkit for professionals across healthcare, education, housing/homelessness and other youth focused services, which will provide them quick and easy access to the information and resources they need to better reach, identify, support and signpost LGBTQ+ young people at risk of homelessness.
  • Over Pride season we will go live with our akt outreach programme – calling on people to volunteer to present and promote our services to professionals and young people in schools, colleges and other youth-based settings across the country. If you are connected to a local service and would like to share our work with them, please get in touch with [email protected]
  • At akt we believe the best role models for LGBTQ+ young people are young people who have lived experience which mirrors their own. As part of our youth engagement programme, we are currently training our new cohort of Young Ambassadors. Please watch out for them online, at events, across the media and on our website over the coming months sharing their inspiring stories.

Over 150 young people from Africa, north America, France and across the UK will be joining us on 1stJune for our annual Youth Conference – an opportunity for young people to develops skills, peer network and advise akt on better meeting the needs of young people.

For our 30thanniversary year the Speaker of the House and the Deputy Mayor of Manchester will be hosting receptions to mark our incredible work and position as the world’s first organisation to respond to LGBTQ+ homelessness with safe homes, mentoring and support. Over summer at a series of venues across our regions you will be able to see our photographic exhibition and film featuring the incredible people who have made akt what it is today. We also have some incredible guests visiting us throughout June and July, so please watch our social media for more information

Of course, the highlight of our 30thanniversary will be our extra special Gala Dinner on 17thOctober. Expect an event like nothing else you have ever seen from us or any LGBTQ+ charity; an evening of cabaret, stars, dinner and dancing hosted at the super cool Troxy, with an 80’s theme in tribute to our launch in 1989.

If you would like to support our ground breaking work and secure safe homes and better futures for LGBTQ+ young people, then please share and support our ‘Room for Love’ summer campaign launching on 2nd June. If you love our new branding, then please visit our online shop - also launching in June - where you can purchase some gorgeous gifts for yourself or others and support young people at risk at the same time.

In July I will be sharing news about our partnership work in Brighton, our plans for expanding our Purple Door housing project and an update on young people’s leadership of our campaigning work. Also, there will be some very exciting announcements which I am bursting to tell you about. In the meantime, during summer akt will be at pride events in London, Manchester, Salford, Newcastle, Brighton, Bristol and York and I hope to see you there. Please let us know if you want to join us in the Manchester Pride parade.

Thank you again for your support.

Tim Sigsworth MBE
Chief Executive