Who we are
'First Wednesday' is a support and social group for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) asylum seekers in the Manchester area.
We take our name from our pattern of meeting in the afternoon of the first Wednesday of each month.
We meet in Manchester city centre at the offices of the LGBT Foundation , close to Piccadilly station and only a short walk from the bus and Metrolink stops in Piccadilly Gardens. Although most of our members live in the surrounding Boroughs, we have found that a public transport journey into the city centre is usually the most direct, easily accessible, and least costly option for them.
What we do
At our meetings we discuss topics of interest to LGBT asylum seekers, share information, and try to create a supportive atmosphere where people can be themselves. At our social events we enjoy ourselves, relax, and try to get to know each other better.
There are many LGBT groups in Manchester, but often these don't understand the unique problems that asylum seekers face. There are many asylum groups in the city, but often these don't understand the issues that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people have.
We are a friendly group which understands the pressures that you face and we try and help with those pressures through friendship, support and practical help where we can. We have also organised some social events - a wander around the Christmas markets, a trip to the seaside, and a weekend in the Lake District together.
Our meetings are welcoming and informal and usually follow the pattern:
- 3.30pm - access to room and refreshments
- 4pm - start of session
- 5.30pm - social time, refreshments and networking
- Where? - The LGBT Foundation, Number 5, Richmond Street, Manchester M1 3HF.
- When? - The first Wednesday of the month, 3.30pm to 6.15pm.
- Who? - Philip, Lee and Andy - contact details below.
Respect ourselves and each other
- Keep to time.
- Treat others as we wish to be treated.
- Listen to and pay attention to each other.
Be realistic about what we can afford and who we are
- We will provide travel expenses to cover - or to make a contribution towards - the cheapest possible travel ticket for asylum seekers only.
- We can't provide alcohol or food or direct grants of money to people.
- We recognize that this is a group for asylum seekers. (Andy's and Philip's roles are to facilitate and administer but not lead the group. Non asylum seekers who come along do so to support asylum seekers where appropriate.)
- We want to create an atmosphere of trust and so we don't repeat outside the group things we hear in the group.