An evaluation of three projects working with younger and older Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people
This article discusses and evaluates three programs carried out in 2011 by Age UK that aimed “to promote solidarity and improve relations between different generations of the LGBT community.”
In Camden, a section of London, different generations of the LGBT community participated in arts workshops designed to challenge stereotypes and address social isolation. Local partners were Age UK Camden (the Opening Doors Project) and Gendered Intelligence, a community interest group that works with young transgender people and has a specific focus on the use of arts.
The workshops were held in the Central School of Speech & Drama and consisted of four all-day sessions with a final art exhibition that showcased project work. The disciplines initially included photography, video, installations, sound, and creative writing, but later expanded to include more traditional arts-based media such as painting to accommodate the interests of the older participants.
This extensive qualitative evaluation looked at numerous aspects of the project including the use of art to bring older and younger people together, including the use of arts. There are many illuminating comments from participants. The following statement from a Project Worker highlighted some key issues:
“It’s an eye-opener for the older ones because they’re not used to this gay stuff — for the older population they’re not used to being out, gay, being who you want to be with no controls. And there’s an element of wariness from older people, but the workshops are breaking this down and … saying it’s okay to be …..spangly!”
An accompaniment to this report ‘Bridging the Gap: Exploring the potential of bringing older and younger LGBT together’ as well as a tool kit to inspire future work can be found on ilcuk.org.uk.
Creative Aging > Intergenerational Programming
The International Longevity Centre
ageing, arts workshops, Intergenerational, LGBTQ+, LGBTU, London, UK