Co-op and Mind expand LGBTQ+ youth service

The Co-op has partnered with charity Mind to expand its Young Rainbow Minds wellbeing service for LGBTQI+ youth in East London.  

The partnership is set to provide support for young people aged 17-24 over the coming year, following a successful pilot launch. 

The project will reportedly be teaching “Radical Self Care”, which includes educating participants in techniques such as mindfulness and boundary-setting. 

The new approach has been designed to address the specific challenges facing the mental health of youth in the LGBTQI+ community.  

READ MORE: Central England Co-op ringfences petrol for emergency workers

The symbol group has also announced that it will be partnering with Rainbow Noir to support LGBTQI+ people of colour. 

The convenience retailer is currently raising £8 million to contribute to 52 community services across the UK, supporting a minimum of 10,000 people.  

It has so far raised £6 million and will be launching fundraising events over the next year to hit its target amount.  

“One of the pillars of our vision of Co-operating for a fairer world is responding to the big issues affecting our communities such as mental wellbeing,” Co-op chief executive Steve Murrells said. 

“We must continue to help build resilience in our communities to help people get access to the support they need at the time they need it.” 

Mind City, Hackney and Waltham Forest chief executive Vanessa Morris added: “LGBTQI+ young people, especially those from racialised communities, face additional barriers to good mental health. 

“With the Co-op’s help, Young Rainbow Minds is building a restorative community, supporting LGBTQI+ young people to share compassionate self-care, trust and the freedom to be themselves. 

“The pandemic has been particularly hard on young LGBTQI+ folk and so tailored support services like ours are all the more important.” 

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