YOUNG LGBT+ people in Wales are leading a campaign to show the need for more inclusive education in schools.

Just Like Us, the charity for LGBT+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, plus) young people, launch the #YoungerMe campaign today, Wednesday, December 9. They want to raise awareness of the struggles faced by LGBT+ people growing up.

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Scott McGlynn from Cardiff. Picture: Laura Charlotte Photos.

The Welsh ambassadors give talks in schools across Wales and they are sharing their experiences as part of the campaign to show what needs to change for schools to be happier and safer places for LGBT+ pupils.

Scott McGlynn from Cardiff said: “When I was in school there was no teacher education on how to deal with bullying for being gay.

“They told off the student and that was about it, but they didn’t know how to help with the mental health side of things. It ruined my confidence and I had depression because of everything going on. At times my mind even turned to dark thoughts and I just thought about ending it all because I had no help or support in school. I felt very alone.

“From age 11-15 our bodies go through the most important stage of our lives and that is scary enough for any kid but on top of not understanding was it what to be gay (I had no internet back then) and being judged every day, it was a really difficult time. When I was in school, I would hardly ever speak. I have however today really grown into myself and now I speak on camera and do live content which I never thought I would do.

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Scott McGlynn's #YoungerMe photo.


“This is why its so important for charities like Just Like Us to help schools and students. It becomes more of a safe place where your personality can flourish instead of somewhere that destroys your confidence and ability to be yourself.

“Talks, groups where students can engage together and proper teacher training to help tackle these issues so forth is really fundamental in the education system and I feel very passionate about it.”

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A talk in a school by a Just Like Us ambassador. Picture: Greg MacVean

As well as the Welsh influencers, celebrities including UK Drag Race queen Divina De Campo, trans Emmerdale actor Ash Palmisciano, athlete Michael Gunning and non-binary author Jamie Windust will be sharing their stories. Shadow schools minister Wes Streeting has also backed the campaign.

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Dominic Arnall, chief executive of Just Like Us, says: “We’re thrilled to be launching this campaign with the support of people like UK Drag Race queen Divina De Campo, at a time when LGBT+ young people are facing increasing isolation due to lockdown restrictions.

“Both coronavirus and Christmas are likely to add to the feeling of isolation among LGBT+ young people and it’s vital that we are able to continue supporting them through our community network, mentoring, Ambassador Programme, and by helping schools and colleges to make education inclusive through our Pride Groups programme.

“Just Like Us is looking forward to shining a light on the vital need for inclusive education in transforming the lives of LGBT+ young people, and we can’t wait to see supporters’ #YoungerMe posts on Twitter and Instagram this December.”

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