LGBT History Month is the annual month-long celebration and reflection of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender history, and the history of gay rights.
In the UK, LGBT History Month is coordinated by Schools Out UK, which aims to increase visibility of the LGBT+ community, as well as the history, lives and experiences of the people in it. It works with schools and other institutions providing resources and training to help make them safe spaces for LGBT+ children and young people, as well as raising awareness of issues that affect the community.
February was chosen as LGBT+ History Month to coincide with the 2003 abolition of Section 28 (of the Local Government Act), which stated that local authorities were not allowed to “intentionally promote homosexuality or publish material with the intention of promoting homosexuality”.
Barnardo’s services The BASE, the BU Project and Positive Identities all work with LGBT+ young people, providing support, education, shelter and more. We’ve compiled some of our resources, as well as other materials, online events and more below, to bring the rich history of the LGBT+ community to you.
The Barnardo’s Positive Identities Service, funded through Calderdale Council, Big Lottery Fund and Children in Need, provides support to children, young people and families around sexuality and gender identity. The team works with young people who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and young people questioning their gender identity, and also with family members to help them support young people around their identity.
The service provides a variety of support, including 121 support for young people, youth groups (both face to face and online), and online meet-ups for parents and other family members. It works mostly in the North of England and West Yorkshire.
The Positive Identities service offers training to professionals, supporting schools, children and young people’s services practitioners and community groups to ensure their organisation is inclusive and accessible to LGBT+ young people and their teams are proactively challenging discrimination and prejudice. Organisations that embed excellent practice receive our Beacon School Award (school specific) or Safer Spaces award (wider organisations). Through our involvement in the Anti-HBT (Homophobic, biphobic & transphobic) Bullying Programme, we worked with the PSHE Association to develop Primary and Secondary Resource Packs for schools.
In 2018 a group of 14 to 25 year olds, who all identify asLGBTQ, led a history research project with Barnardo’s The BASE service in Newcastle, and North Tyneside Libraries. The result was an amazing series of conversations between older and younger members of the LGBTQ community.
The goal was to inform young people and enable them to trace their LGBT forefathers and foremothers, and give them a sense of personal and social belonging. The project also raised awareness of the positive impact LGBTQ history has had on young people throughout North Tyneside, and enabled young people to feel both proud of their heritage and supported in sharing their knowledge in the wider community, leaving an important legacy for future generations.
The Proud Trust pack
The Proud Trust’s LGBT History Month Pack includes excellent lesson plans for KS3 and KS4 students around the 2021 History Month theme of Mind, Body, Spirit. The lessons range from notable LGBT+ athletes, to learning about Maya Angelou and creating a poem based on young people’s experiences, to exploring symbols and the communities and identities they represent. The pack includes learning outcomes and national curriculum links for D&T, English and Art, resources and preparation guides.
A free subscription is required, and the pack can be downloaded here. You can also access previous years packs.
LGBT+ History Month
Schools Out UK has created an online resource space for LGBT+ History Month with a number of free resources aimed at anyone who works in education or is educating children at home.
The Classroom has created and compiled over 80 lesson plans that bring LGBT+ issues into the curriculum, covering all ages. You can find all resources here.
Voices and visibility
Voices and Visibility is a site developed to enable viewers to find out more about the law, people, symbols and themes that are represented in picture on the Voices and Visibility: Uncovering Hidden Histories wallchart, downloadable from the same page. There are also audio descriptions of the wallchart and the profile photographs of the personalities, and describes all elements of the chart.
The wallchart provides an overview of the LGBT laws, figures and symbols from the 1800s through to 2012, including images of notable people and explanations of their significance.
OUTing the Past
OUTing the Past is a free virtual event organised by the National Maritime Museum. They will be discussing the experiences of non-western LGBTQIA+ communities, with a focus on migration, the effects of empire and global activism.
They also have a LGBTQ+ histories and events hub for all their activities planned for History month. From interactive workshops to craft activities to panels to artworks, they’re approaching the LGBT+ history month with inclusive activities the whole family can take part in.
Museum of London
The Museum of London is exploring the heritage of LGBT+ Londoners through their collections of stories. With an angle of historical documents and research, they look at iconic landmarks as well as delve into the queer history of the UK.