LikeMinded is a bespoke personal development project supporting LGBT+ young people to build their confidence, resilience and positive mental health while having fun and achieving their Gaisce – The President’s Award. The programme is facilitated by Gaisce and funded with the support of Social Innovation Fund Ireland.
According to the 2016 LGBT Ireland Report, figures showed that young LGBT+ people in Ireland are susceptible to low confidence levels, isolation and discrimination. Gaisce – The President’s Award is a proven model that works to increase self-confidence and wellbeing for young people. Participating in Gaisce will give these young people an opportunity to increase confidence and help develop a positive identity. It also provides an opportunity for LGBT+ youth to come together with a like-minded peer group to complete their Gaisce Award.
LikeMinded follows the structure of the Gaisce Bronze or Silver Award with the added support of one-to-one mentoring. The group have been meeting since March 2019 where firm friendships have been forged.
As part of their Award, they will undertake an upcoming Adventure Journey this October Bank Holiday weekend. 13 LGBT+ young people accompanied by Gaisce staff and adult mentors will don their hiking boots and rucksacks and take to the mountains and valleys of County Wicklow. This is a new departure for Gaisce, as the Adventure Journey element of the Award is normally facilitated by PAL’s (President Award Leaders) and the schools or youth groups they work in.
At Gaisce HQ, the maps are being poured over as we check out routes, the gear list compiled, and provisions being stocked. Who wouldn’t relish a weekend’s hiking in the autumnal beauty of Wicklow? The Adventure Journey promises to be tons of fun. Hopefully, there’ll be a campfire song or two and friendships and memories made to last a lifetime.
The LikeMinded programme itself will culminate in the New Year with a creative exhibition by the young people and a presentation of their Bronze and Silver Awards.
For more information about Gaisce and LikeMinded, visit www.gaisce.ie
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