Derbyshire LGBT+ have branched out with a brand new centre in Chesterfield. The launch was attended by MP Toby Perkins along with representatives of many local organisations showing their support for the centre. The centre was officially opened by the Mayor and Mayoress of Chesterfield.
Derbyshire LGBT+ has been a central presence in the local gay community in Derby since the organisation’s launch in 1983. Originally the organisation, set up and run by enthusiastic volunteers from the local gay community, aimed to help other lesbians, gay men and bisexuals come to terms with coming out and meeting others.
The organisation has grown and now also provides support to people who feel that they have difficulties relating to their gender identity. Derbyshire LGBT+ has also become a support organisation for many LGBT organisations and networks, such as schools, to whom they provide information and resources.
The group found there was a growing demand for support in places outside Derby, such as Chesterfield and Swadlincote. The centre will provide a drop-in service and group sessions for LGBT+ people and their family and friends.
Toby Perkins said “We have made huge progress as a society and it is fantastic that a facility like this is here. However, it is important to remember and recognise those campaigners in more difficult and less enlightened times. They were the pioneers who enabled us to get where we are today.
I also know that although things are hugely better people are still attacked or discriminated against because of their sexuality and it is because of that, that centres like this are so crucial and to have this here in Chesterfield is a source of tremendous pride for us.
I know that the more people get to know about the centre, the more it will provide the crucial support that is still required for people at all ends of the journey, whether they are young people discovering about themselves or people at a more advanced stage of life struggling with loneliness and the other trials other older people face but with additional challenges too.
So I am absolutely thrilled that this centre is here to provide this hugely valuable service.”
More information can be found at https://www.derbyshirelgbt.org.uk/chesterfield-centre/