West Nottinghamshire College held back-to-back Pride events, ‘to give learners and staff at all its campuses an opportunity to celebrate and show their support for the LGBT+ community’.
Its construction centre in Kirkby held one event, where students were joined by colleagues from the college’s engineering centre in Sutton.
A second event was held at the college’s Derby Road campus in Mansfield, which was joined by learners and staff from the Chesterfield Road South site in the town centre.
Wayne Golding, college support coach, said: “At the very first meeting of our LGBT+ Student Focus Group, learners said they’d love to hold a celebration to mark Pride Month, involving a walk around the college and dressing up – so we decided to go all out and give them a really good experience.
“We felt it was important to show them we had listened to what they wanted.
“There were lots of activities at both events and they were very well supported by staff and students from all our campuses.
“The feedback has been brilliant. There were lots of smiling faces and students said it was amazing to have something like this, that they felt a greater part of the college and that we should definitely do this again.”
Celebrations included including badge-making, tie-dye crafts and face-painting, and the opportunity to throw a wet sponge at a friend or colleague in the rainbow-coloured stocks.
Rainbow cakes and Pride-themed merchandise were on sale, while representatives of community organisation Ashfield Voluntary Action held a stall in Kirkby, its LGBT+ support services.
The highlight of both events was a ‘Pride walk’ on the streets around the campuses.