Pride at Macquarie’s support of LGBT+ non-profits: an ongoing passion project
Macquarie Group’s LGBT+ employee network group in the EMEA region, Pride, is always very active and proud to support LGBT+ community initiatives and non-profits to further amplify the impact and reach of their work, that is to foster a supportive, safe, empowering and inclusive environment.
In recent years, the Pride network has supported many non-profits through a variety of fundraising and volunteering initiatives. Each year, Pride also selects one specific LGBT+ non-profit with which to partner closely, in order to focus its fundraising efforts and consolidate the extent of its impact. In 2020 that partner charity was Opening Doors London (ODL), the biggest UK charity providing support services, including befriending, specifically to benefit the older LGBT+ community.
Through this partnership Pride has, over the past three years, helped raise approximately £20,000 for ODL through donations and by facilitating and sponsoring a variety of fundraising events. These have included ping pong tournaments, ‘City4LGBT+ 2020’ (a live virtual crowdfunding event arranged by The Funding Network, with ODL as a beneficiary), and four annual ‘high tech high teas’ connecting ODL via video conference with equivalent US charity, SAGE, to explore topical issues of mutual interest. The network also provided resources for ODL’s ‘Pride in London’ party in 2019.
In addition to fundraising, ODL and the Pride network have collaborated in a number of ways to create more awareness, in the industry and beyond, about challenges which the older LGBT+ community have faced, and to create a more open dialogue about diversity and inclusion. In 2019, Pride hosted ODL’s Marguerite McLoughlin as a panellist in a ‘Hate Crime and Hate Speech’ event, at which Marguerite discussed the Admiral Duncan bombing in 1999 and its aftermath from her own personal experience. More recently, earlier this year Pride hosted ODL’s Evelyn Pittman in a webinar, to present her oral history project, ‘From a Whisper to a Roar’, tracing the history and development of the modern LGBT+ movement through the voices of women who have lived it.
Pride steering committee member Jackie Kelly has, along with two other Macquarie volunteers, also been working with ODL over the past six months through Macquarie’s Community Resourcing (CoRe) programme, sharing business skills and helping ODL develop its communications planning alongside its frontline care programme.
Alongside Jackie, other members of the Pride network are involved in the third sector to further support LGBT+ non-profits. Geff Parsons, who has chaired or co-chaired the network for the past seven years, is a trustee of both GiveOut and Diversity Role Models, while Rachel Engel, another member of the Pride steering committee, heads up Macquarie’s charitable arm, the Macquarie Group Foundation.
The Pride network employees are proud of the collaboration with ODL to date, and recognise the impact that partnering with LGBT+ non-profits can have in accelerating their mission for a more inclusive world. Pride’s current co-chairs, Charlie Clark, Harry Clifton and Geff Parsons, commented jointly: “We are enormously grateful for the sacrifices, work and suffering of the older LGBT+ generation. It is far from ancient history and we want to thank them and not let anything they did for our current benefit be forgotten.”