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Bid for Equality: aGender plans art auction fundraiser in July

Susan Lelliot from the aGender project is organising a fundraising auction and raffle – the Auction of Art and Queer Curios – on Friday 17 July at the White Rock Theatre. Here she explains more about what aGender does and how we can all help it keep running exciting projects.

unnamedIt is with no reserve and much enthusiasm that we are pleased to tell you about aGender and our up-and-coming fundraising auction.

In the words of one of our young volunteers, “aGender is inspiring. It helps young people learn and talk about challenging but really important issues concerning identity and equality. It breaks down ideas about what ‘art’ is and helps develop young people’s creativity and ideas.”

AGender is a small Hastings-based charity. Starting up in 2013, it is the brainchild of local artist Xaverine Bates. Against a backdrop of reductions in young people saying they feel unhappy, increasing child poverty and lessening concerning levels of teenage pregnancy and bullying, the charity set out to increase young people’s self-esteem, empathy, critical thinking and creativity. Wanting young people to make considered and safe relationships and life choices, aGender aims to help free young people’s full potential and let them exceed the limits of gender and related stereotypes, such as race, class and ability.

Our programmes are developed with young people. ‘As You Are’ was created at Hastings Adventure Playground. Puppet-making, mural and performance work encouraged 8-12 year-olds to look at the ways in which we make judgements about each other. Our ‘Art of the Political’ programme was conceived with Hastings Youth Council. This explores how media can be a limiting or liberating force for social change.

Recognising the unique aspects of our work, BBC South East is planning to make an Inside Out documentary about it. Sue Lelliott, project manager, pointed out, “Getting a new charity off the ground is a challenge in the current climate. Having our work filmed will help us reach more young people, as will having local creatives and the wider Hastings community behind us.” Emma Insley, aGender’s chair, added, “Now that initial funding has ended, aGender urgently needs to raise funds to continue and develop its work and extend it to schools.”

aGender were therefore more than pleased when local artists offered to kick-start the Auction of Art and Queer Curios to raise funds towards summer and autumn programmes. We were equally delighted when local graphic designer, Andy Willard, volunteered to be our auctioneer and the White Rock Hotel offered to host the extravaganza. Now all we need is your help!

If you are a creative you could donate a piece of your work for auction. This can be anything from a signed book to a painting or customized bicycle. If you are not so inclined, you could donate a quirky raffle prize. We can’t wait to see what you come up with and would be delighted to see anyone and everyone enjoying the auction evening and bidding with no reserve!

aGender Auction of Art and Queer Curios: White Rock Hotel, Friday 17 July, 7-9pm. More information on the event can be found on the aGender facebook page.
To arrange a donation please mail info@agender.co.uk or ring 07753 962659.

Please note: aGender is a young people’s charity: all donations should be acceptable for viewing by young people aged 8-21 and not contravene the ethos of our work.

Posted 17:46 Tuesday, Jun 30, 2015 In: Campaigns

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