Get Involved

Rainbow Pooch Pride is currently seeking volunteers who identify as members of the LGBTQIA+ community and who are based in the West or East Midlands who can help deliver our new initiative: Rainbow Pooch Pride Portal – Virtual Pat and Chat.

Rainbow Pooch Pride brings the LGBTQIA+ community together through their shared love of dogs. We do this because evidence shows that due to societal and familial encounters of stigma and discrimination our community is at higher risk of experiencing poor mental health, and dogs have been evidenced to bring comfort and help minimize the negative symptoms of emotional and psychological distress, as well as improve physical wellbeing. Previously we delivered in-person social meet ups – Rainbow Pooch in the Park and Rainbow Pooch in the Café. But due to the pandemic we can no longer run these events and there has been an increased demand from our community for our services to be delivered virtually. Our new initiative responds to this offering safe, friendly, alcohol/substance free social space to our community during this time of need.

Across January and March 2021 (every Sunday) we will host Virtual Pat and Chats via Zoom. There will be four series with each series being delivered over three consecutive weeks by a Guest Speaker alongside the Host (Gina Biggs – Founder of Rainbow Pooch Pride). Each speaker will present a different way in which the connection to dogs can positively impact physical/mental wellbeing. We are looking for volunteers who can:

  • Work alongside Gina to support the technical running of these events on the day and monitor the chat function.
  • And/or write about their experience for the blog which will feature on our website Rainbow Pooch Pride.

Volunteers supporting the delivery of the events will need to be available for creative Zoom training on Sunday 20 December 1-4.30pm. Beyond this project, this professional development opportunity will be of interest to anyone considering how to facilitate creative group work online in a sensitive and supported way. In addition to the training volunteers must be able to commit every Sunday (1-3pm) to join us virtually for one of the following Virtual Pat and Chat Series:

Doga (yoga with dogs) – 3,10,17 Jan

Dog Breeds and Behaviours – Cohabiting with kin – 24, 31 Jan, 7 Feb

Relax and unwind – A beginners guide to canine massage – 14, 21, 28 Feb

Mindfulness with dogs – 7, 14 & 21 Mar

If you are interested in joining us please email by midday Thursday 17 December stating:

  1. Why you want to be involved with this initiative
  2. What you, as a member of the LGBTQIA+ commmunity, value most about dogs
  3. Your preferred dates (from the selection above)

This initiative is funded by: Coronavirus Community Support Fund distributed by The National Lottery Community Fund.