Portsmouth City Council's 4U clinched Public Sector Organisation of the Year at the Portsmouth Youth Voice Awards held on Thursday 16 February.
4U is a citywide service that works with young people aged 11-19 years old who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or are questioning their sexuality or gender identity.
The project runs a weekly youth group on Tuesday evenings where young people can safely explore their identities, free from the worry of judgement, hostility or bullying. It carries out positive activities to strengthen the resilience of the young people who attend and increase their emotional wellbeing and positive mental health. The project also includes one-to-one work and supports schools in creating student-led LGBT Societies.
4U was nominated for the award by the young people it works with and the judging panel who selected it as the winner was also comprised of young people.
Cllr Luke Stubbs, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Adult Social Care, said; "It's fantastic that 4U has been recognised for their work with this award. They do a great job of supporting young people who may be feeling secluded or confused due to their sexual orientation. The mental wellbeing of young people in the City is a key priority for us so having an award winning service that helps support with this is a great result."
Sayeeda Nur, Chair of Portsmouth Youth Voice and Portsmouth High School student, said; "4U was a deserving winner. The nominations received for the project made it clear what a positive difference 4U has made to the lives of the young people it works with. Going through school and college can present a number of challenges and pressures for young people but these can be even more intense if you feel different to everyone else. 4U helps people to accept and be proud of who they are, which is invaluable."