ShoutOut launches guide for parents and guardians of LGBTQ+ children

The guide created by the Irish charity aims to educate parents and guardians on the different aspects of being part of the LGBTQ+ community.

Close-up of a man holding a
Image: Meg via Unsplash

Irish charity ShoutOut published a guide for parents and guardians of LGBTQ+ children focusing on educating families on LGBTQ+ issues. With uncertainties surrounding LGBTQ+ topics that some parents and guardians might face, ShoutOut hopes many will find this guide valuable.

A grassroots organization begun in 2012, ShoutOut has worked the last ten years towards its mission of improving life for Ireland’s queer community through educational workshops presented at schools, workplaces and beyond. With a focus on “Inclusion through education,” they inform their training modules by speaking directly to young members of the LGBTQ+ community and have now run more than 1,800 workshops.

Former President of Ireland Mary McAleese, who contributed to the guide, explains that “sometimes parents/guardians’ reactions to their child’s sexuality or gender identity are part of the problem and it can be difficult for a son or daughter to engage in the reasoned conversations that allow love to avoid damaged relationships. This guide aims to help and equip parents and guardians with the knowledge and information they may lack and ease the worries that some parents and guardians may have around their child being LGBTQIA+”.

The newly published LGBTQIA+ Guide For Parents & Guardians follows the launch of t includes:

  • Language and terminology on sexuality, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and biological sex
  • What LGBTQIA+ kids with their parents knew
  • Talking to young people about LGBTQIA+ identities
  • How to be supportive for your LGBTQIA+ child
  • Building inclusive homes
  • Relationships, sexual health and consent
  • And more

The guide features also contributions from former President Mary McAleese, former Minister for Children & Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone, Senator David Norris, and Trans activist Dr Lydia Foy, as well as LGBTQ+ organisations such as Equality for Children and TENI.

“This guide for parents and guardians will be a great help to those who may be struggling to accept their child’s sexuality or gender identity. It’s very important that parents and guardians have this information to better help and support their LGBTQIA+ children” says Dr Lydia Foy.

ShoutOut Steering committee member and volunteer Domhnaill Harkin proposed the project heavily inspired by his mother’s experience when he came out.

“When I came out at 23 years old, my mother had so many worries and questions, she completely accepted me but was worried as to what kind of life I would have. I realised there was no easily accessible information on what being LGBTQIA+ is directly targeted for parents and guardians. A few years later I decided to do the guide through my work with ShoutOut”, he reveals.

Lastly, the former Minister for Children & Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone emphasises that “every parent or guardian wants their child to be happy” Therefore, “this guide offers savvy and practical pointers for answering these questions”.

The LGBTQIA+ Guide For Parents & Guardians is available for download on ShoutOut’s website.

© 2022 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

Support GCN

GCN has been a vital, free-of-charge information service for Ireland’s LGBTQ+ community since 1988.

During this global COVID pandemic, we like many other organisations have been impacted greatly in the way we can do business and produce. This means a temporary pause to our print publication and live events and so now more than ever we need your help to continue providing this community resource digitally.

GCN is a registered charity with a not-for-profit business model and we need your support. If you value having an independent LGBTQ+ media in Ireland, you can help from as little as €1.99 per month. Support Ireland’s free, independent LGBTQ+ media.

0 comments. Please sign in to comment.