SAND is on the move – we have taken the decision to rent an office! Now that may sound like small fry but for us it is HUGE. Moving from kitchen-table-working to applied office-work is intended to help give SAND the much needed jump that it needs to move forwards. Some of the details are still a bit sketchy right now – we have an office lined up – nicely positioned in Shrewsbury Town Centre and a date to move in; we have plans for it to be a sort of drop-in space and a bit of a hub for LGBT activity but we are not entirely sure what that means yet.
A couple of the SAND Action Group Members are under-writing the first year with their own money to make sure it happens and there are lots of ways that you can help – no matter where you are located. We get the keys in June and we will be sharing more information at our Building Our Own Castles event on 7th May.
How you can help
We are going to need furniture to create a comfortable space and we would love it if this was all donated so everything has its own story. If you have any of these going spare, or are willing to purchase them for SAND please let us know (we’ll cross them off as they are offered). We are not worried about things matching – we just want it all to be welcoming!
- A table – approx 5ft x 3ft, or thereabouts (or two smaller tables that can be put together) – we’ll be using this as a desk and also as a meeting table
2 wooden kitchen chairs 1 office chair – this must go up and down! 3 folding chairs
- 2 tub chairs
2 bookcases (we hope to house a small non-fiction LGBT library)
- 1 small set of drawers (or set of small drawers!)
- 1 colour laser-jet printer – preferably one of these http://www.brother.co.uk/printers/colour-laser-printers/hl3150cdw
1 standard lamp 1 desk lamp
- 1 table lamp
- 1 flipchart stand
- 2 cushions
1 two-drawer filing cabinet
- 1 rug – approx 5ft x 4ft, preferably forgiving – e.g. grey fleck, or similar (we have been offered one for £30 so there is an option for financial donation so we can purchase it)
- 1 cupboard – to keep printer paper and toner in, possibly for printer to sit on top of, so a similar size to a 2-drawer filing cabinet
- 1 coat stand
- 1 umbrella stand
We have to pay a wodge up-front for the lease to be drawn up. This makes the first payment a bit top-heavy, to the tune of £360! We’d love any contributions to this as a one-off donation of £50 or more. Cheques made payable to Safe Ageing No Discrimination can be sent to SAND c/o 3 Mardol Gardens, Shrewsbury SY1 1PR. We have already had one cheque – huge thanks for that 🙂
That is a lot of money so – another way to help is to sign up to the SAND Well-Wishers scheme where we ask our friends and supporters to sign up to a monthly standing-order for £2 or £3 – the price of a coffee! You can do that by using this form: Well-Wishers Word Doc (or this pdf version: Well-Wishers pdf).
And that is not all. At a meeting on 18th April 2016 SAND voted to adopt the Shrewsbury Hub of the National Festival of LGBT History as a SAND project and take it forward to ensure some sort of festival in 2017. In 2016 there has been a great deal of overlap between the two as the volunteer organisers are pretty much the same and the aims and content of the festival align very well with SAND. The Festival will still have its own website and bank account.
Meanwhile – catch up with what SAND has been up to by coming along on May 7th – we’ll be giving an update on our research – funded by Healthwatch Shropshire, plus some work we are doing to develop training packages. We are also submitting other funding applications and getting some good first-stage feedback so – fingers crossed!
With all this going on we want to make sure that we communicate as well as we can. Please sign up to our mailing list to keep in touch – you can do so here: SAND MailChimp mailing.
And finally. Last year SAND was approached by the national Age UK organisation to contribute to a special issue of the academic journal Quality in Ageing and Older Adults which was going to focus specifically on LGBT people. We were asked to write a couple of film reviews and we chose to do this through a collective process of film viewing and group discussion. The journal is now out and about – and difficult to access on-line (here) but we are expecting a couple of copies to arrive in the post and we will make sure they go into the new library!
This Blog records what is happening at which point of SAND’s development.