Lottery Cash Goes to Gay Mental Health
Byline: STEVE DOUGHTY
LOTTERY charity chiefs handed out more than [pounds sterling]500,000 for fringe sexual and ethnic social research yesterday.
The decisions to give large grants to a group promoting mental health among homosexuals and another examining 'understandings of sexual health and safety' by young people in Sheffield, are likely to raise new question marks over where lottery money goes.
The grants are the latest in a series to groups catering for gays or obscure minorities. Former Prime Minister John Major was once provoked into public protest by a grant to a gay organisation.
The National Lottery Charities Board played down the contribution to less mainstream causes in its fanfare for the new round of grants - payments totalling [pounds sterling]24.4million to 139 health and social research projects.
Instead, it highlighted the help it is giving to research into 'a huge range of medical conditions' and 'a huge range of personal and social issues, including bereavement, caring, child accident prevention, coping with disability, the effects of retirement, special needs education and substance abuse.' But the handouts also include [pounds sterling]68,927 for a two-year project by the Institute of Education in London 'to evaluate a mental health advocacy project for gay people.' The cash will pay for salaries, equipment and running expenses.
Nearly [pounds sterling]90,000 will go to Social and Community Planning Research in London 'to understand the causes of homelessness among lesbian and gay youth and to highlight their needs.' That money, too, will go on 'salaries and associated project costs. …