Since early 2022, we have been on a journey to achieve our Silver Charter with LGBT Youth Scotland. We are absolutely delighted that LGBT Youth Scotland have reviewed our evidence and awarded us our Silver Charter!
Our letter of congratulations stated that:
“Reflective, artistic and collaborative are key themes which are found throughout Imaginate’s LGBT Charter Portfolio. The work that has been executed has been done with the LGBTQ+ community at its core, notably the panel at the most recent Edinburgh International Children’s Festival, highlighting the genuine platforming and celebration of queer expression in the creative arts. Both internal and external communications on the Charter have been strong throughout and leave the staff many avenues to continue working on to continue their LGBTQ+ equalities work. The work provided meets all criteria at silver and as such, Imaginate have been awarded a pass. Congratulations on earning your Charter award!”
Here's a snapshot of what we've done during our charter journey:
- Consulted staff, artists and board to understand where we were at with LGBTQIA+ inclusion
- Received full organisation training from LGBT Youth Scotland on LGBTQIA+ inclusion, both in 2022 and 2023, which was incredibly useful and thought provoking.
- Updated our policies to ensure LGBTQIA+ identities are protected from discrimination
- Added staff pronouns to our email signatures and website bios
- Bought 500 pronoun badges which were shared with staff, delegates and audiences at the 2023 Edinburgh International Children’s Festival
- Created webpages which make our stance on LGBTQIA+ inclusion more visible
- Collated a list of LGBTQIA+ resources for young people, schools and artists/companies
- Made sure to celebrate important days in the LGBTQIA+ calendar on social media, such as Pride Month and Trans Day of Visibility
- Platformed performance with LGBTQIA+ themes at our 2022 Scratch Night and the Queer Work for Young Audiences panel during the 2023 Edinburgh International Children’s Festival
- Supported artists who are making performances with LGBTQIA+ themes through our artist development projects Launchpad and Accelerator
We recognise that it’s an incredibly difficult time for LGBTQIA+ artists, particularly those creating work for young audiences. Through conversations with LGBT Youth Scotland and the artists we work with, we’ve learned a lot about the importance of supporting LGBTQIA+ artists and the role Imaginate can play in providing a buffer between artists and bigoted criticism.
It's been brilliant to see how our work has been received - the pronoun badges went down a storm at the Children’s Festival, our Queer Work for Young Audiences panel was so popular we had to move to a bigger venue, and everyone on the team has been so open and willing to learn.
If you work in the young audience sector, join us at Ideas Exchange on Wed 25 Oct to celebrate our year-round work with artists. The event will include sharings of LGBTQIA+ themed performances that are being developed as part of our creative development programme:
If you'd like to chat to Anna Broomfield, our Schools & Communities Project Coordinator who has led on the LGBT Charter since November 2022, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.