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 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 current government COVID-19 restrictions 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. Some of our buddies have lived experience as an LGBT person, and some are LGBT allies. 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 those who are:

  • over 50
  • people of colour
  • being advised to shield due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • disabled
  • seeking asylum or refuge
  • on a low income or are unemployed
  • unable to access LGBT Foundation groups at this time for any reason
  • carers

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 complete our wellbeing services self referral form. If you have any questions about the service, please contact [email protected] or call 0345 3 30 30 30. 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, please keep an eye on this page for futher updates.

This service is a run by the Pride in Ageing programme at LGBT Foundation.

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