Open Doors provides individual counselling and support for young people who are questioning, exploring or identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual and / or transgender who are 12 to 18 years old.
We also assist schools to enhance their support to young LGBT people and their families by providing information and resources to administration, guidance officers, teachers, and school based youth health nurses.
Open Doors is available to come to schools and work with school staff and students to raise awareness and responses within a school environment for LGBT young people.
In-service training and workshops can be designed in collaboration with school community members.
Brochures & posters
Please contact Open Doors for copies of our brochures or posters to keep in your school.
Fast facts for schools
- Three thousand Year 10 and 12 students from every State and Territory completed questions in a sexual health survey and a question about sexual attraction was included. It found that 8-9% said they had experienced sexual attraction to the same sex. (Lindsay, Smith and Rosenthal, 1997)
- 70% of gay and lesbian young people report being abused at school; 60% by other students, 10% by friends, 3% by teachers. (Hillier et al 1998.)
- Many teachers express concern about how individual community members may respond if the teachers appear to be ‘pro-homosexual’. In this context the idea of individual teachers implementing new policy directions on their own is unrealistic and undesirable. It is important that teachers and principals know that they have the backing of State, Territory and Commonwealth legislation. (Ollis, Mitchell, Watson, Hillier and Walsh 2002, Safety in Our Schools-Strategies for responding to homophobia, Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society: La Trobe University)
- “There’s a more modern day term that students have used since I’ve been teaching. They’ll refer to negative situations as gay, like that a gay shirt or that was a gay shot. They just use the term interchangeably, just however they want to and I think that would be very degrading to students questioning their own sexuality.”
- “I don’t think they (LGBT young people) would be able to openly express themselves, maybe in their close circle of friends, but not on a general basis in the situations we have at the moment in schools.” (Teacher- Reece on Open Doors video When School’s Out…)
- “School was hard you know and there was nothing there for me … it was like you just didn’t speak about it.” (Carl, age 17)
- “Teachers should be really cracking down on bullying; it’s really hard if you are being bullied for something you can’t help…it’s just you!” (Ashley, age 16)