Our communities are more connected, creative and resilient when everyone is able to take part in community life. In this panel discussion, our host, Sophie Bridger will be joined by Maria Munir, Katy Jon Went, and Chris Sims, to discuss the importance of making our communities inclusive for LGBT people, how communities benefit, and what we can all do to create more inclusive spaces.
Sophie Bridger is Scotland Country Manager for Eden Project Communities, managing The Big Lunch and Eden’s Communities work across Scotland. Before joining Eden Project Communities, Sophie worked in the LGBT community, and is passionate about inclusion and community activism. She lives in Edinburgh with her husband, and her cat, and loves spending time in the sea and mountains.
Maria Munir is the Associate Director, Community Engagement at Stonewall, where they have worked for two years. They are at the heart of transforming the way Stonewall works with communities, from embedding trans inclusion to supporting sport engagement and the Info Service. Their grassroots and national campaigning on trans rights has led to them being recognised with la médaille du barreau from the Paris Bar, shortlisted for Liberty’s Christine Jackson Award, and named as one of BBC 100 Women’s Girls’ Champions.
Katy Jon Went, UK Coordinator of the Human Library, is a public speaker and educator on gender, identity, sexuality, mental health, human rights, diversity and inclusion. They have taught on the history and variety of gender expression as a guest lecturer at various universities, and have spoken at arts and WOW festivals and TEDx. They are also a co-founder of the Fifty Shades of Gender project which looks at the incredible variety of ways in which we identify and express gender.
Chris Sims, Head of Global Policy Impact at the University of Nottingham, and is also on the steering board for the University’s annual diversity festival. He was previously Head of Education at Stonewall and member of the EDI Executive Group at the Big Lottery Fund. Outside of work, Chris has been active in community theatre for many years and is a board member, director and actor at the Lace Market Theatre in Nottingham.