A small project, which a few of us who are involved with Podio launched last year, has recently grown wings of it’s own and now aspires to become an independent charity in England & Wales.
Hate Crime sign posting website, After Hate, was initially intended as an add on to Preston’s gay club night, Dirrty Harry’s; a simple platform to encourage local victims of hate to report it to the police and make them aware of other factors that may be applicable to them. However, the site has been so well received by members of the public and by partner / potential partner groups and organisations, both locally and afar, that founder, Andy Neale has decided to put it into the control of volunteer trustees to ‘take it up a level’
“I don’t have a clue when it comes to charities” he admits, “I’m currently on the Board for Preston Pride and was a Trustee for Lancashire LGBT Centre before we won a major lottery bid, but I’ve always offered input from the sidelines. With After Hate, I don’t feel I have the ability to make it achieve it’s potential on my own and so offered an open invite for anyone to get onboard”.
Andy recently relocated to Preston from Blackburn and, by his own admission, has come to a crossroads in his personal life. “It was a choice between deleting the website when the URL came up for renewal & renaming the social media accounts to something else, or opening it up for anyone else to run with”.
Thankfully, after posting a status on Facebook, a team of “fab local individuals stepped up”. The community group are now in the process of raising the £5k required to register with the Charity Commission.
As part of National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2017, some of the people who came forward to become trustees or those who support in other ways, have been posting live videos / pre-recorded clips onto the hate crime signposting Facebook page. We strongly recommend you spend ten minutes having a browse.
Ric Newton, the treasurer, told Podio, “We pride ourselves on being Preston-based but having national potential. I’d love for us to go international in future years! I’m Preston born & bred and love this city, I love that this great project has started here – and I’m proud of how young many of those involved are; not something usually seen around a typical board room table”
Initially LGBT focused, the group are keen to reach out to other community groups. Get in touch to get onboard – email After Hate.
For more on After Hate, visit the website / check out their Twitter.