More about the BYOU project

BYOUThe BYOU project Wigan and Leigh, is an action group that campaigns for positive change for young people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning your sexuality or gender identity(LGBTQ). If you’re under 19, living in Wigan Borough, LGBTQ and want to get involved, come and join us.

We meet every week and offer support, advice, activities and safe meeting places.

BYOU is completely confidential. We will make you welcome!

To find out more you can email us on  

The things we like best about BYOU…

  • You can meet other young people
  • It builds your confidence a lot!
  • It’s welcoming
  • We treat each other like family
  • You can celebrate your sexuality
  • You can be yourself here
  • You can learn from each other and support each other
  • You can talk to youth workers in a group or one-to-one
  • We get involved in interesting things.

Things we have done recently…

  • Campaigned for and led the first ever Wigan Pride!
  • Taken part in Pride, Manchester
  • Presented our ideas to senior people and councillors at Wigan Council
  • Attended LGBTQ events in Manchester and across the region
  • Attended the Youth Cabinet events
  • Ran training sessions for teachers and local councillors
  • Created a booklet to help other young people who might be LGBTQ
  • Met Sir Ian McKellen!

How BYOU has helped us…

‘It’s given me a confidence boost and helps me accept me for who I am. The youth workers give me someone to talk to. Since I’ve come to BYOU I have got better at socialising and made some friends. Because I have depression it helps me to get rid of the problem of feeling different. The group helped me to come out to my friends and family. I have learned all about the history of LGBT and can educate other people about this. This group allows me to be myself as I don’t have to hide a big part of me.’

‘We have some responsible adults (our youth workers) to talk to, so I know there is someone who understands everything I have been through. We go on educational visits and have great experiences. I feel more accepted for who I am.’

‘I am 16 years old. The thing that I like is that BYOU has been here for me since the age of 13 and it has helped me to be the person I have become, in that I have more confidence and feel I can be myself. Since coming to BYOU I have been on many courses like first aid, cooking, sailing. It is a safe place to be and also helps with support and everything in life. Please don’t ever take it away!’

‘BYOU has given me friends, someone to talk to, confidence and a reason to live because I am NOT a FREAK. It is the highlight of my week.’

‘Without this group I would have locked myself away. We are accepted for who we are and I’ve made so many new friends. It has changed my life because I felt invisible at school but ever since I have come to BYOU I have never felt invisible and I am no longer ashamed of who I am.’

Some quotes we like…

  • ‘A true friend is someone who supports you no matter what.’
  • ‘In the same way that you don’t have to be an animal to support animal rights, you don’t have to be gay to support gay rights.’

Things no-one says to heterosexuals…

  • ‘So when did you decide you were straight?’
  • ‘I think a person on my course is straight, do you know them?’
  • ‘Oh I always wanted a straight best friend!’
  • ‘That’s so straight…no offence!’

© Wigan Council