Chronic loneliness spikes over Christmas in Manchester’s Queer community.

  • Loneliness rises over the festive season
  • Supporting the Queer community over Christmas holidays
  • The Proud trust holds youth group sessions over Christmas and New Years for the Queer community

The Proud Trust is hosting support groups in Manchester over the holidays to combat loneliness in the Queer community.

Loneliness is a major issue in the UK.  The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reports the prevalence of chronic loneliness has risen by over half a million. In addition, statistics from Statista show that 17 percent of individuals in the UK revealed that they feel lonelier during the festive season.

Members of the LGBTQ+ community are more likely to be lonely than cis or heterosexual people. According to LGBTQ Hero, loneliness in the Queer community can stem from multiple factors. They are more likely to be cut off from their family or have difficulties connecting with others like themselves.

The Proud Trust

In conversation with Liam Nicks from the Proud Trust, a charity that supports LGBTQ+ young people with their identity and their lives. Liam said: “Loneliness is a major issue in the community, especially over the Christmas break.”

The Proud Trust Community Centre Sidney St. Credit – Makenna Ali

Liam raised the issue of mental health. He said: “Mental health can stop people from socializing and can be negative around the holidays due to the pressure to be happy.”

The Proud Trust will be supporting the community over the holidays. They have tips for staying safe on their website and social media platforms. In addition, they are hosting youth group sessions between Christmas and New Year which are open to all within the age range.

The Proud Trust support group engages in festive activities. Credit- Makenna Ali

Supporting the Queer community over the holidays

According to the Proud Trust, more needs to be done in Manchester to support the community. Liam said: “In Manchester, there are limited social spaces set up for the LGBTQ+ community and their allies. The majority involve alcohol and are night-focused.”

For those who are feeling lonely in Manchester during the holidays, there are multiple safe spaces for the community to enjoy. Queer Lit and Feel-Good Club are local LGBTQ+ businesses. The customers are part of the community or allies.

In addition, several organizations provide support like the Proud Trust, The LGBT Foundation, and The Albert Kennedy Trust. These organizations offer support and also host support groups available for everyone to attend.

Support lines available to call throughout the holidays

Samaritans – 116 123. Free for mobile and landlines, it does not appear on bills.

Childline – 0800 1111. Free for landlines and most mobile carriers.

Mindline Trans+ 0300 330 5468. Available Mondays to Fridays till midnight