Freedom Youth was formed in Bristol in 1995 to support lesbian, gay and bisexual young people. To celebrate its 21st birthday Rosa Fanti and Lori Streich have traced Freedom’s roots back to the initial meetings in the basement of Greenleaf, an alternative bookshop in the centre of town.
Freedom Youth is one of the oldest, and possibly the longest continuously running social and support groups of its kind in the country. The authors talked to many people who have used Freedom or worked in the project over the years to piece together a fascinating story in words and pictures.
It’s a story that documents the history of Freedom Youth, explores the challenges and changing attitudes towards gender identity over the last 21 years but most of all illustrates how Freedom Youth has made a difference to the lives of a generation of young people by providing a space where they can be out and feel comfortable with their sexuality and identity. A place where they can be Free To Be Me.
Free To Be Me is supported by Off The Record, Heritage Lottery Fund and OutStories Bristol.