Tynemouth MP Alan Campbell today spoke at the launch of Hidden Histories, a showcase exhibition at the Jam Jar cinema in Whitley Bay organised by leading UK children’s charity Barnardo’s.
The project is a youth led social research project into the lives of LGBT people in the 1960s to the 1990s. The exhibition is the culmination of a year of hard work and intense learning by an amazing group of young people aged 14-25 who have been at the forefront of the project, which was made possible due to a grant from the Heritage Lottery Young Roots Fund.
Barnardo’s The BASE in Whitley Bay has been developing a programme of work specifically with young people who identify as LGBTQ+ for just over two years. The Hidden Histories work came about due to a government white paper that highlighted the disproportionately high levels of mental health issues, serious self-harm and suicide attempts by young people who identify as LGBT.
Supported by staff and volunteers from The BASE the young people, through involvement in their social group @The BASE, became curious about the past and the lives of their LGBT predecessors and were inquisitive about who had paved the way for them as LGBT pioneers. These conversations and curiosity led to the Hidden Histories project.
Alan Campbell MP said “This project tells part of the story of our local community and the diversity which reminds us who we are. It is also a hidden story, the story in many cases of personal struggle and the pioneers who led the way for others. I am delighted to have been asked to open this event and congratulate all the young people and Barnardo’s staff for all their hard work.”