ROTHERHAM’S Rainbow Project grabbed a handful of awards at the inaugural South Yorkshire LGBT+ Awards.
Three trustees and the group itself were named winners at the awards recognising high achievers involved in projects for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
Trustees Helen Goodson, Kirsty Fletcher and Nichola Goodson (pictured) were all nominated and Helen took both the inspirational role model award and the trans activist prize, while the Rainbow Project won the gong for best community group or network group.
Poet Carol Robson, also from Rotherham, was the toast of the evening, taking the lifetime achievement award.
Another Rotherham winner was Emma Sharp of Rotherham Ethnic Minority Alliance, who was honoured in the Ally to the LGBT+ community category.
Nichola Goodson said: “At the Rainbow Project, we work tirelessly within the LGBT community of Rotherham to help and support those who need it.
“Just to be nominated for the awards was an honour, but to actually win some of them was amazing.
“We don’t work alone and to have one of our allies also win an award made the night extra special.”
Emma Sharp, who is REMA’s policy and engagement officer, said she was “really shocked” even to be nominated and had only found out from a Facebook post in which she was tagged.
Other winners at Saturday’s black-tie event at Sheffield Library Theatre included football club AFC Unity, the chair and vice-chair of Pride Sheffield, Heather Paterson and Luke Robert Allan and South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue, which won in the employer category.
Organisations like Rotherham Pride, Rotherham United Community Sports Trust and Rotherham College were also among other nominees, as well as Kirsty Fletcher from Lifeline Rotherham.
“I’m just glad to be sharing the event with so many people and to celebrate diversity in a town that can sometimes be seen as being so segregated,” said Emma.
“There are so many people doing wonderful things for Rotherham’s LGBT and minority communities,
“I’m glad I am not the only one being nominated. It’s not so much about the nomination, but about raising awareness on these issues.
“I’m really excited for the ceremony and to celebrate diversity.”