ASPIRE SPORTS AND CULTURAL TRUST LAUNCH TRANSGENDER SWIMMING CLUB TO ENCOURAGE SAFE SPACE SWIMMING
- 03 December 2019
- Super User
Aspire Sports and Cultural Trust in Gloucester recently trialled a new transgender swimming sessions at their popular GL1 facility. The trans and non-binary swimming group is in partnership with Trans* Gloucestershire and is designed to support transgender customers and their families to feel more confident whilst using their swimming facilities.
Aspire is dedicated to improving the health and well-being of people throughout Gloucester, which means that community facilities should be open and accessible to anyone in the area. With this ethos in mind, Aspire and Trans* Gloucestershire decided to pilot a family-friendly swimming group for trans and non-binary individuals.
The trial has proved to be very successful, with 8 customers attending the first transgender swim session and 14 at the second session. 28 members of Aspire staff also attended the training sessions, coming away feeling engaged, motivated, and inspired by the valuable insight into various aspects of what it was like to be a part of the trans community. Training was conducted by a transgender team leader, and this training will continue to support the programme so that staff can reliably run the sessions.
Jacquie Douglas, Chief Executive of Aspire, said: “We’re thrilled that this trial has been so successful already. We’re confident that this will be a great asset to our community and look forward to the next session. Partnering with Trans* Gloucestershire has been wonderful, giving us the insight needed to address some vital needs of the community.”
Kate Glanfield, Co-Founder of Trans* Gloucestershire, added: “With reported hate crimes at record levels and many other barriers facing the trans* community, it's no wonder some of our members have not been swimming for years – or even decades. The team at GL1 have helped us realise an incredible goal by creating a safe space for the trans* and non-binary community and their families, in which they can exercise without fear of prejudice or ridicule.”
Kate continued: “Trans* Gloucester had the pleasure of delivering awareness and service training to the wonderful staff at GL1 and were thoroughly impressed with the care and compassion they showed. From young people who have been excluded to adults who struggle to leave their home, we have received incredible and often heart-warming feedback.”
The swimming group will run one Saturday a month from 6.45-7.45pm at Twyver Pool.