Lunch & Learn and Big Glam Drag Bingo with Switchboard
Celebrating Pride Month with Switchboard
To celebrate Pride Month, Howden’s LGBTQ+ Respect group partnered with charity Switchboard to shine a light on the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace and beyond.
The LGBTQ+ Respect group aims to raise awareness about LGBTQ+ issues and to promote opportunities for engagement both inside and outside the company through educational initiatives and social activities, year-round.
The first Pride event was a virtual lunch & learn session on LGBTQ+ history in the UK lead by Jamie Richardson from Switchboard. Founded in 1974, Switchboard operates a nationwide helpline, which offers the LGBTQ+ community a safe space to discuss sexuality, gender and identity. The helpline is open 365 days a year thanks to dedicated volunteers.
Jamie started as a Switchboard volunteer himself and educated the audience about key milestones and challenges the LGBTQ+ community has faced across the decades, using real log book entries to demonstrate.
The session was incredibly powerful and moving, and really emphasised what our LGBTQ+ friends, family and colleagues have faced whilst also stressing the importance of Switchboard’s services. Without the support of its 200-strong volunteer network, the charity would not be able to continue to provide this invaluable support.
Big Glam Drag Bingo raises over £2000
In order to further support for Switchboard and its volunteers, Howden’s LGBTQ+ Respect group organised the Big Glam Drag Bingo night as our Flagship Pride month event, with all proceeds from ticket sales and the raffle – prizes included handmade Pride quilts - going to Switchboard.
Held in Howden’s London office at One Creechurch Place, the bingo was hosted by London drag icon Herr, supported by up-and-coming drag performers Miss Leigh Ding and Jvst Tina, plus drag DJ Grace Shush who provided lots to look at, lots to laugh at, and watch out for.
This event raised more than £ 2000 for Switchboard through the sales of raffle tickets alone, and given the positive feedback from the event it definitely won’t be the last Drag Bingo night at Howden.
About Howden’s LGBTQ+ Respect Group
The LGBTQ+ Respect group is one of the 9 employee resource groups at Howden that helps connect, support, and empower communities of employees across all Howden Group entities. The Respect group aims to raise awareness about LGBTQ+ issues and promote opportunities for engagement both inside and outside the company through educational initiatives and social activities, year-round.