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Respect

Freedom Centre is run by young people for young people using a peer support model. Peer support is where people get support from other people who share similar experiences. We are funded by the Mental Health Commission to prevent mental illness and promote mental health, aiming to:

  • increase community connectedness and engagement (or reduce social isolation),
  • provide relevant information about all aspects of health & wellebing, and;
  • encourage & support help-seeking.

We do this through a peer facilitated informal safe social space as it’s most empowering and accessible to young people.

At Freedom Centre, this means that our volunteers and staff are people who are also young and LGBTIQQ or have an otherwise diverse sexuality and/or gender (DSG) and are trained to be able to give support and information to their peers.

 

Peer support at the Freedom Centre works using Social Cognitive Theory, which basically says that we learn and develop best when we observe our peers and get the right information that’s relevant to us and have a safe and respectful social environment to practice and understand what we learn. At Freedom Centre we hope people learn to accept and respect themselves and others. The volunteers use peer support to provide an ideal space for this to be learnt and understood.

 

So we use peer support and the safe social space to empower young people to be themselves, be confident, make healthy informed choices and respect both their own diversity as well as others'.

 

Find out more about out drop-in centre and all of our Services by clicking here!

Background Info

Freedom Centre is primarily funded by the Mental Health Commission to prevent mental illness and promote mental health. We are managed and auspiced by the WA AIDS Council as part of the Community Engagement Services department.

 

This means that our focus is on education and prevention around mental health and sexual health. We do this by providing support and information about sexual and mental health and by maintaining a safe social space with healthy attitudes towards sexuality, gender, respect, empowerment, self esteem and education.

History of FC

Freedom Centre started out in 1994 as a part of the “Other Voices” program in Gay Men’s Education at the WA AIDS Council (WAAC). It began to provide and ongoing social space for the young men that participated in the gay education courses. It was a space to provide the young men with social opportunities outside of the “scene”.

 

Over time through the Youth Sexuality Project run by WAAC, the Freedom Centre became an all genders space and got its own premises and recurrent funding. Through feedback from the visitors and volunteers, the different sessions were established through time (Create, Girlspace, Guyspace, GenderQ, Freespace, Outspace, SkillShare, 1st People's Qspace, QCulture, Junior aGender, QMovie).

 

Now Freedom Centre enjoys community support, regular visitors, dedicated volunteers and its safe space to meet young people with diverse sexuality and gender.