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Selected Nominations for Safe Haven – Cornwall for the National Diversity Awards – Community Organisation (LGBT) Award.2019
Below are just over half of the 121 nominations that were received for Safe Haven – Cornwall for the National Diversity Awards – Community Organisation (LGBT) Award.
The nominations that we see from the NDA contain no indication whatsoever of who has submitted them. The nominations have only been edited prior to appearing here to remove any indications from within the detail as to who the originator might be and to tidy up some of the spelling, typos etc.
These are being published with full permission of the National Diversity Awards organisation.
As a sorted non-transitonal girl I thought this group was fantastic, and we have nothing like this in Dorset. Full power to be a registered charity. I have attended meetings, and think the work they do could be a national model
A positive group for the transgender community and LGBT community in Cornwall, allowing an outlet for those who need support. They also visit local Colleges to help staff and students understand transgender people. They are having a positive effective in Cornwall
This is a unique organisation which is needed in today’s culture. All should be supported and feel safe in their sexuality and how they wish to be portrayed. This organisation makes their members feel safe and free to discuss freely. If this group did not stand people would feel isolated and feel uncomfortable in their daily lives
They are great advocates for the trans community and helping people from the south west be themselves, and on a personal note they have given me a place to relax in a safe environment and meet people who don\’t judge me for the way I present myself. The work that safe haven do is much needed in a region that lack such facilities.
Without this group I would have been at a loss as s parent in how to support my transgender daughter. Finding safe haven meant that she had a place to go and be accepted as she is. This truly helped her mental health and was a huge emotional support for me as a parent
Safe Haven will always hold a very important, special and magical part of my life and my heart. Early in my own transition I attended their monthly event and presented my true self to the world for the very first time, prior to which had only been in my own bedroom. The confidence and acceptance I felt on that weekend continued as I was shown the love and support of what is a truly incredible organisation. I would not be where I am today without them and I owe them a large credit to the life that I now live. I have battled through depression, gender dysphoria and suicide ideation, all of which I have had help, support and guidance from the wonderful people of Safe Haven (especially Pixie, who has been my counsellor and friend). To see the growth of the organisation is remarkable, they deserve heaps of recognition and mountains of awards for the wonderful work they do towards helping the transgender community of Cornwall, as well as the many who travel from Devon and further afield in search of help. I have an incredible amount of respect for the time and dedication that all of the trustees have put into the work at Safe Haven. This kind of work takes a big and strong heart as often it is against much protest and backlash in society, but they have been unfaltering in their commitment to giving outstanding support to so many people in the South West. This would never have been possible without the self-belief and confidence that Safe Haven gave me. I give a huge heartfelt thank you to Pixie, Paula and all of the trustees at Safe Haven for the amazing and inspiring work that they do.
I feel that Safe Haven offers a very valuable service in an area of the country where traditional values are still very strong and understanding and acceptance very weak. They provide a really safe non-judgemental comfortable environment for all those struggling with gender identity whatever their age.
If it wasn’t\’t for this group I would have still been hiding in the shadows I may not have ever been to safe haven to meet any of them but I\’m on their Facebook support page and everything I have seen is a very big inspiration and what they are doing is for people like myself I\’m a transgender female and if it wasn’t\’t for groups like this I would have never have been myself so I would like to nominate safe haven for being a very inspirational support group in the national diversity awards hello I\’d like to say thank you to them for making it possible for me to be who I am today thank you from your support group member Jamie
Cornwall within a national framework is tiny place but this charity brings a powerhouse of tireless effort, enthusiasm and love whilst giving a voice to a community that is often shunned, misunderstood and forgotten. Proud to know the founder members and to spend time with those that clearly benefit.
Such an amazing organisation, it\’s so important that spaces like this are available to trans and non-binary members of the community to ensure they feel safe and loved. These spaces create an environment for them in which they can express themselves.
Safe Haven is such a needed organisation, especially in Cornwall where attitudes towards trans people are still very hostile. Living in Cornwall myself, I have seen first-hand how people have been treated on the street and how my friends have been treated. Everyone deserves to feel safe no matter who they are.
The work Safe Haven does is so invaluable to those of us on the transgender spectrum. Not only are they providing a safe space for self-expression, but they are also working tirelessly with businesses and colleges, providing training and education on diversity policies and bringing acceptance to the fore
Without the support of Safe Haven that I received I would not have been able to be my true self, they have given me the confidence to live my life, I am living in society as my true female self, no other support group even comes close to Safe Haven and the passion they have for the transgender community xxx
I have very recently started to follow a transgender journey that I should of started many years ago. There is no doubt that safe haven has been invaluable to me. I have discovered a community that provides a supportive, caring and safe community to be part of. The effort put in by the trustees is above and beyond expectations. Safe haven has also provided the opportunity to build a network of new friends. People from all walks of works from such diverse backgrounds. For the first time in my life I feel accepted for who I am without having to pretend to be someone else. Simply put safe Haven is simply that, a safe haven.
they do amazing work for the transgender community providing a fun safe environment for what most find a very difficult journey.
I have known Paul and Jackie for 2 years and regularly attend the monthly parties. They are lovely people. They provide a safe and friendly environment for anyone who feels different, to be themselves. Professional services are available if necessary (counselling etc), or sometimes just a friendly chat in a quiet corner can help someone\’s confidence
The proof of the pudding is always in the eating, as is the resounding case with this group, Safe Haven. From small beginnings made possible by the generosity of the founders, Safe Haven has grown into an inspired and inspiring group giving friendship, heart, empathy, education, security, professional counselling, advice and lots of fun to many who otherwise would have gone on feeling lost and unhappy.
An amazing organisation offering support and friendship to the trans community.
A bunch of hard working, very caring people who will go above and beyond to help those in need.
An excellent place being run by such lovely people. A very much needed facility in this rural area, even though I myself have yet to come out and make use and meet everyone involved. Of course, I would love to, but the current situation I am in prevents me from doing so. This is even more a necessity to recognise this fabulous organisation!
These are a group of people who genuinely want to be there for others. The support and help they give a well as supplying as the name says, a safe haven for the trans community is faultless and very much in short supply elsewhere, making this a very important and needed project.
Amazing and caring work they do
Such a welcoming and friendly group, with wonderful help and advice. So many fantastic activities and events, always organised to perfection. Always a smile and a hug and a welcome second to none. Truly is a Safe Haven
Safe Haven is so deserving of this award, Jackie and Paul/Paula have poured their heart and soul into this amazing charity. They have created a safe a friendly environment for the trans community where they can be their selves without any prejudice.
I feel that safe haven is a much-needed safe space for trans people. As a trans person myself, I know how alienated we can all feel out there in the world. I feel that this organisation is most deserving of the award.
My son is transgender and though we live a little too far away to attend the events, Safe Haven\’s online support has been invaluable as there is very little personal support available in the West Country. My son has been waiting over 2 years for a CAMHS therapist, and faces an ongoing (one year so far) wait for a space at a gender clinic.
Safe Haven is both a safety net for trans folk of all ages and a growing resource for social interaction – whenever I hear of someone in the trans community suffering problems the first place I think of is Safe Haven – we are so very lucky to have this in Cornwall but people come from even further afield to avail themselves of it\’s support network.
Safe Haven do fantastic work for the trans/non binary community and is a valuable asset for its members. Its continual growth goes to show what a valuable resource it is for those that engage with the service
An amazing and much-needed resource for a community that seems to have been completely forgotten by the state. The value of what goes on here for sometimes vulnerable people is incalculable.
The time and effort put into what they do/provide is second to none, it’s just amazing and they should be recognised and awarded for all the hard work and how they make people feel at Safe Haven is fantastic.
I first found safe Haven Cornwall in 2015 it’s an amazing place to trans people. And I’ve blossomed into the person I was meant without them. I be in a different place I think it more than just support they are amazing people and become friends
I\’m nominating them because Safe Haven was the only source of support that was available to me when I was initially supporting my transgender daughter in her journey. Safe Haven has been the only safe place where I could receive specific guidance, support and information that allows my child to have the best possible experience in life. I can’t imagine what my journey as a parent would have been life without the support of Safe Haven. My family would have been completely isolated.
A unique group that have been there for us. That might not sound ground-breaking but the isolation, confusion, rejection and judgmental behaviours we experienced were at times devastating. Both Face to Face or online, the warm, authentic welcome and subsequent inclusion and support has made our journey through transitioning bearable. The group continually evolves-to encompass changes both in the world at large and our own individual lives, there is not a one size fits all ethos but-an acceptance and they embrace each and every member with genuine respect. I would like to nominate them in recognition of as a unique and amazing group that is open to everyone.
Safe Haven is a lifeline for transgender and gender variant people in Cornwall. Before I found them, I felt isolated and very much like I was \’the only trans in the village\’. To find out that there was a warm, welcoming community where you could just be yourself was lifesaving.
They provide a unique service.
Support for trans people is very thin on the ground in Cornwall, and Safe Haven is exactly that – a place for those to express themselves in a secure environment without judgement or prejudice. Safe Haven organises many social events over the year in addition to their regular support meetings, purely as another avenue to reach out to as many people as possible to help them meet people going through the same internal struggles that may exist. Safe Haven should be applauded for making this facility available in an area of the country where the level of understanding is quite low. I have met several trans people on one of Safe Havens many events, and the one recurring theme we talk about is how grateful they are to have this level of personal support available. They’ve shown that gender diversity is to be celebrated, not reviled, at any age, especially when the final feeling within is acceptance of who you truly are. They are truly deserving of an award.
Safe haven Cornwall provides essential, amazing and selfless support on so many levels to all transgender people in the region and beyond – and more importantly a safe space where we can meet, socialise and bring partners. None of us choose our path; we are born transgender and grapple over the course of our lifetimes to come to terms with being TG and to seek acceptance / understanding from the wider community. Everyone who has had any contact with safe haven or knows people who have been helped / supported couldn’t speak more highly of what they do for our community. Many of us would not be here or have grown to be the person who want to be without their support, kind words and patience
Safe Haven get it. They understand. I am new to the group and appreciate all they do now and in the future. They deserve recognition and to continue and grow helping all. They listen. They advise. They support. They are a haven.
They just deserve this…..
Because of the invaluable work they do and incredible commitment to the area.
They are providing a safe place for the most persecuted minority group in modern Britain.
Never felt so at ease as when I’ve spent time at safe haven
I haven’t known Safe Haven very long but I’m loving it. The chance to be myself in such a safe and supportive environment is amazing. Couldn’t wish for a friendlier place to be, where everyone is treated equally and with respect. Really do wish I’d found them sooner…30 years sooner! It is one hell of a confidence boost after being so closed in on myself for so much of my life. They are fantastic people who help us all to be the real us.
My partner and I found Safe Haven earlier this year. If only we’d found it sooner! My partner has spent his whole life hiding, in terror of being “found out” and a life spent indoors is no life. The team at Safe Haven have been amazing, so welcoming and relaxed. On my first night down there, a particularly wet and windy January evening in the dark, going somewhere new to meet who knows who, my nerves where terrible. But waiting for me under a light was Paul with a huge smile and a “You must be xxxx -Hi, come in”. They had made sure that someone was looking out for my car, someone who was prepared to get off their bum and come out in the rain to welcome me. And that is the Haven. Always there for everyone.
Having grown up in a rural area similar to Cornwall I know only too well how vastly lacking LQBTQ support facilities are outside of major cities – an organisation like this is invaluable, particularly in places where people have a tendency to be far more conservative and as such somewhat ignorant. The support offered by Safe Haven is a precious resource in a time and place where such services are still too few and far between, their mission is genuine and admirable and that is why I am nominating them today.
I nominate Safe Haven as I have watched this community grow from an idea to a great community, A community that is both private & safe as the name suggest. Also reaching out too many who are isolated. The Community offers a hand of friendship & professional support to families for those who identify as trans gender & non binary. The community offers social events, holidays in safe groups, regular social meets & clinical support. It’s been amazing to watch the spirit & energy of the two founders, creating great such happiness & acceptance. A grass roots Community Organisation with a professional platform. I am a huge fan.
Living in the village, we have seen Safe haven Cornwall grow over the years, they have had some very tough times with some of the villagers not understanding what they are about and trying to get them shut down due to ignorance. Safe haven has gone to great lengths to encourage the locals to attend events where they can educate people and meet trans people in a comfortable environment. This has proved very successful with a lot of the locals often attending functions especially the Christmas and Halloween parties. They deserve every award going for outstanding support, well done Safe Haven Cornwall.
As a family we have received huge support at a time when we felt lost and alone. Our son was in the darkest place but with guidance and support from Safe Haven he is so much more comfortable today. Safe Haven continues to play an important role in our lives as we live and learn on this journey.
Safe Haven – Cornwall is quite an amazing organisation. It has grown from a tentative start by holding coffee mornings 4 years ago, to now carrying out many activities, including monthly party weekends, with a variety of workshop sessions, outings and support groups for adults, youths and family members and friends. It provides a very safe environment, and truly is welcoming to people all across the gender spectrum. People coming for the first time, from near or far, are always impressed by the warm and welcoming atmosphere that Safe Haven provides. Safe Haven provides support to everyone who chooses to come, and it is amazing how many people have grown from being nervous and uncertain about coming out as their true selves to growing in confidence, leading to many of them living as themselves full time for the first time, and even progressing further from there. Safe Haven has certainly been incredibly understanding, supportive and helped me understand and become comfortable as my true self. I often have to pinch myself that somewhere as amazing as Safe Haven not only exists, but that it exists and thrives in such a rural and parochial location like Cornwall.
Safe haven is a most fantastic organisation. Under the tutelage of Jackie (Pixie) and Paula you have the friendliest happy and non-discriminatory people. You are ever likely to meet. Everyone that attends safe haven are made to feel welcome and allowed without any talk or finger pointing or hurtful words or actions to be Yourself- no matter where on the trans spectrum you maybe. The party weekends are absolutely amazing for getting together with likeminded people and just being YOU in a safe and happy environment. As for the support group sessions- this is a lifeline for many especially the younger people and is a much-needed resource in this often forgotten about part of the world. Safe haven events be them the support groups the party nights or other organised excursions make the trans community and general LBGTQ+ communities look up and see what is achievable by willing volunteers to help this wonderfully diverse group of people and more groups should aspire to achieve what Safe haven as such a small group has achieved. I know personally from my own experience of attending that if it want for this outlet for showing my real persona who knows where I would be today! An amazing group of people who deserve all the accolades of being a supportive group for OUR community. Keep up the good work.
Although my trans child has only just joined my child found them welcoming and supportive. For me as a parent they have helped my child feel accepted in their skin which is always a worry for me. I also know there is somewhere or someone there to help if I need to talk.
My partner and I have been coming to Safe Haven since just after it started and its always a pleasure to come along to the support groups and events. It is one of those environments where you feel like you can be yourself and not feel any pressure and get to know people easily, there is a family like atmosphere that surrounds us which is really lovely. I wanted to nominate safe haven because they make such a huge difference to the trans community in the South West and they\’re simply one of the best things to happen.
I can only reiterate what has been said and will be said about Safe Haven. It is a haven for us girls to be ourselves, to express through fashion, words and deeds why we are who we are. It is safe not just like parking and access but in that everyone is welcome. The first time I went there, on my own, not knowing anyone and having never ventured out before it was if a little daunting but safe to walk up the stairs, open the door and be greeted and welcomed by Pixie and Paula. You have no idea what that meant to be able to walk into a room of unknown people and be greeted with open arms and manicured nails. Their work is still in the genesis stage, it needs funding to give Cornwall a vast county with lots of trans communities scattered across towns and villages the structure to give less certain people about their sexuality an opportunity to learn about themselves for their family to understand and support their kin as they make difficult possibly life changing decisions. Please give what you can to help Safe Haven grow and prosper in these ever-changing social times. Give them the financial grants to help people who are recognising their sexuality.
I nominate safe haven because it is a worthy cause, I feel quite at home there with like-minded girls and the clue is in the name “Safe Haven”. helpful, friendly and secure with various events being held on a monthly basis, meetings every week for all and free to attend. What more could anyone ask.
When I first taking tentative steps into exploring my gender it was a really unsettling time. It was difficult to know where to go safely or even how to meet like-minded people. I turned up at Safe Haven about 2 1/2 years ago and was instantly made to feel at ease. It was great to meet like-minded people and listen to their experiences as well as making some long-term friends. Safe Haven is an invaluable resource for the transgender community and for future people exploring their gender.
Safe Haven provides an area of welcome relief to the transgender community. I travel over 2 hours from Somerset each month for an afternoon of relaxing, enjoying company of others on a similar transitioning journey. Support, love, empathy and a unique camaraderie exists here in a world populated by a large number of uneducated people. Safe haven also works tirelessly with local businesses and colleges, educating society about transgender issues, necessary to overcome much bigotry. They are a role model for any organisation wishing to promote diversity
The reason nominating Safe Haven for an award, is how they have helped me to progress with my transition in life, as a transgender person, they give a lot of support and counselling at every stage of my transition, they give a positive prospective to life, by way of support groups and activities to involve all genders across the spectrum of LBGT families and partners as they are also welcomed within the safe haven umbrella and also supply a very safe environment to meet up regularly. They work tirelessly for the community at all times and give off a positive energy to all that are welcomed.
This is awesome and so needed in Cornwall right now. This kind of support can and will help to prevent the unnecessary higher rates of suicide within ‘our’ Trans communities. Sadly, I have had a tough time – over the years – of transitioning later in life, I have often been a victim of hate Crime too. It is or can be such a struggle and my heart goes out to others in a similar position. ‘We’ need this safe haven and may it go from strength to strength. I have no problem in nominating a project that is not just supportive but could prove to be essential. I, personally, know of two Trans friends who have taken their own lives, both much much younger than I am. I am and remain so sad about this.
My partner is Trans and to have a place for us to go and be around people who understand how things really are and are willing to listen and be supportive has made a huge difference. I hope that with the new funding they can help even more people to be themselves and not hide anymore.
A lovely friendly place run by angels.
Because Safe Haven offer something desperately needed in Cornwall. There simply isn\’t anything else like it available. From the mother of a transgender adult \’child\’ whom l sure l would have lost to depression as a result of isolation in the extreme if it hadn\’t been for the support and acceptance Safe Haven have provided.
Very kindly offered me Christmas dinner when I visited Cornwall.
Giving support to transgender people is something I never had and I wouldn’t want anyone to go through that without help and support it wasn’t till I got with a Gender Clinic at Exeter that I got support they play a big part in any stage of transition well deserved to be among the larger groups that do the same thing it becomes a family not just a support group,
Safe haven Cornwall offered support to me even though I\’m not from the area. Though this organisation I have been able to access useful information and hear views and issues from other people in a similar position to myself and as such I have been given advise and support whilst being able to provide a advice and support in return.
They provide a safe environment for those who have nowhere to turn in the local community, especially those who are not interested in gay clubs or are not ready to transition. They provide an informal environment to chat about issues that are affecting their life.
Safe Haven says it all really. It is a group for people involved within the Transgender and non-binary community. They provide a safe private venue for people to come and socialise, make friends, laugh and just be ourselves. They also run a weekly support group where we can come and discuss all our issues. I have terrible anxiety issues myself and am unable to express myself in public but this magical place provides me with a life line. I can come along and be totally accepted, not as a transgender, but just as me. A girl who can finally be free.
Safe Haven – Cornwall provide an invaluable service to transgender people as well as their partners, and family members. They run a weekly transgender support group, a fortnightly partners and parents support group and an activity-based support group for young transgender people aged 11 to 21. Cornwall is very traditional and rural; many transgender people are isolated and unsupported. The waiting list to access NHS services is currently 3 years long, and many trans people suffer enormous mental health issues due to this huge void. Just being able it go to Safe Haven – Cornwall and talk to others in a similar situation relieves the isolation and helps them cope. Every month there is an entire weekend event, when people can go to Safe Haven-Cornwall and just be themselves, attend workshops, and socialise, as they have a private venue which makes it safe for everyone who goes. Parents of trans children often struggle with the emotional turmoil that comes with trying to help.and understand what is happening with their child. It is very lonely, as they are unable.to discuss it with friends or family until.they have worked through how they are feeling. Their support. Group allows them.to say how they feel, and express their hopes and fears safely and without judgement. Many trans children.and teenagers are out of school, and this causes a lot of.emotional.and social problems. By running activities for them, Safe Haven – Cornwall help them to make friends and socialise with others in the same position thus reducing loneliness and building self.esteem. Safe Haven – Cornwall is the little charity with the big heart, and it welcomes anyone on the gender spectrum with respect, empathy and kindness. Many people.would not be here now but for the support they get from. Safe Haven – Cornwall.