Response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Scotland:
1) What extra services or support, if any did you provide during Covid-19?
- Provided Hardship Relief to over 450 individuals to date to those most in need from the LGBT+ Community across the country. This included Food Vouchers, Fresh Fruit and Vegetables, Mobile Top Ups and Well Being Care Packs including Toiletries.
- Worked with community partners in Grampian, Perth & Kinross, Fife and Glasgow to support co-funded hardship relief efforts in each locality.
- Provided Chromebook Laptops to keep people connected with Family and Friends during the Lockdown and work from home where possible.
- Mobile Broadband devices for those with no internet access.
- Launched the Pink Community Network on Facebook to help bring Community Leaders together to share information and advice in one place. There are more than 90 members to date.
- Invested in the mental health and wellbeing of community leaders through a partnership with Dare-2-Lead, providing leadership talks, webinars, individual coaching and a telephone support service.
- Supported around 30 LGBTQ+ Groups and Organisations in Scotland with advice throughout the pandemic on funding, governance and the relief infrastructure.
- Supported LGBTQ+ Responders across the Country;
- Cash Donation to Dumfries LGBT Plus Group
- Cash and PPE Donation to (MATE) Mutual Aid Trans Edinburgh
- PPE Donation to LGBT Unity
- Digital Curation Work during the pandemic keeping people connected and less isolated, reaching over 10,000 people with their Pink Pride event alone;
- #CommunityMatters Online LIVE Interview Series with members from different groups within the LGBTQ+ Community.
- Pink Pride Scotland – a 14hr Virtual Pride Event with Music, a Virtual Pride March, Family Events and Interviews which had around 10k views and raised £1000 for Pink Saltire.
2) Who was the target audience within the LGBT+ community?
The majority of the project work undertaken during COVID was aimed at LGBTQ+ Adults and those of a working age.
The Hardship Relief work was carried out in Phases due to Funding coming from various Local Authority Funding Sources. Fife and Grampian were the first 2 areas where this work was focussed. As well as Hardship Relief, there was a Book Bag Project for LGBTQ+ Young People. Funding was then secured to do work in Perth and Kinross where work was focussed on those with problems accessing Public Transport during the Pandemic. A Bike Scheme was set up to help those most in need with this problem with Bikes and Discounted Bike Offers. Care Packs were also distributed Nationally to those most in need. Funding has also been secured to start Hardship Relief to start in Glasgow to provide Food Vouchers, Mobile Top Ups and Laptops.
3) Was that the audience that engaged with the support or service?
- Approach to use Networks already in place.
- Hardship Relief and Projects promoted through LGBTQ Groups and Organisations in Scotland.
- LGBTQ+ People in Priority Groups and most in need given Priority for Support
- Families of an LGBTQ+ Person also Supported by the Project
4) Would you say the services were successful?
To date the Projects have been very successful with 450 people helped or supported through the COVID Pandemic by the work carried out in the Community by Pink Saltire. A Survey was sent out to those who have taken part and overall, it has been rated 4.8 out of 5 for Satisfaction with lots of Positive Comments from service users.
5) What support do you feel is needed, particularly in the event of a second wave?
- Infrastructure Support – Dedicated Space big enough to carry out the Community Project Work and for Storage. Paid Staff and Volunteers are needed to do this important work and Recognition from the National Resilience Response Team. Additional Funding is also required to be able to extend the services already being done by Pink Saltire in the LGBTQ+ Community across Scotland.
6) Is there anything else you would like to add which you feel would be useful for this Research Report?
Better Collaboration between bigger Local and National Organisations and Services in Scotland to fill gaps with Regional Action Plans in place.