rainbow brew buddies

We can all agree that a chat over a brew is one of life’s greatest simple pleasures, but not everyone always has someone to do this with regularly. Our new telephone befriending programme Rainbow Brew Buddies aims to reduce loneliness for LGBT people across Greater Manchester who may have reduced opportunities to make social connections due to the recent coronavirus outbreak or other circumstances in their life.

How does Rainbow Brew Buddies work?

Those who sign up for the service will be allocated a buddy, who will have received training from LGBT Foundation and have passed a DBS check. You will then "get-together” over the phone with them for a brew and a chat at least once a week for around 30 minutes. After 8 sessions over one or two months you will graduate from the programme and be given access to our range of LGBT Foundation groups, including the chance to meet others who have benefited from the Brew Buddies programme.

Who is it for?

You must be:

  • a Manchester or Greater Manchester resident
  • aged 18+
  • LGBT or questioning (people who have come out or are not out yet)
  • experiencing feelings of loneliness or isolation due to measures put in place around coronavirus or other circumstances
  • able to access a landline or mobile phone
  • able to commit to regular calls (one or two per week)

We are particularly looking to support people who are:

  • over 50
  • BAME
  • on the at-risk COVID-19 list
  • disabled
  • seeking asylum or refuge
  • on a low income or are unemployed
  • unable to access LGBT Foundation groups at this time

A telephone call will be made with you to establish your eligibility for this service. If you are someone with complex needs or if we establish that your needs are not linked to being lonely or isolated then you may be referred to a different support service.

How do I apply?

To see if you are eligible for this service please read our detailed guidance above. If you are eligible and wish to apply please contact befriending@lgbt.foundation or call 0345 3 30 30 30 – you will hear back from us within two weeks. We are also happy to take enquiries if you know of someone who could benefit from this service and you require information to pass on to them, however we cannot make an initial call to them without their permission.

How do I become a ‘brew buddy’ befriender?

The application process to become a 'brew buddy' befriender is currently closed as we are at capacity, please keep an eye on this page for futher updates.

We have received a high number of applications to volunteer since launching the service, and we appreciate your patience while we are working our way through enquiries.

This service is a collaboration between our Pride in Ageing and Our Manchester programmes, and is supported by our Wellbeing Team.

This programme has been made possible thanks to a contribution by the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund.