The aim of the course is to unite people of different orientations, mindsets, backgrounds, lifestyles, and origins and help them better understand each other and interact in one society.
According to this survey, LGBTQ+ communities are more likely to experience symptoms of depression and have a much higher stress rate because of discrimination in their families, universities, or at work. 95% of respondents report trouble sleeping at night and 77% feel depressed. 71% of LGBTQ+ youth report being sad or hopeless.
For Pride Month in June 2022, BetterMe and UKRAINEPRIDE are honored to launch an audio course LGBTQ+Me. Embracing Our Differences to unite people of different backgrounds, lifestyles, and mindsets and help them better understand each other. We are collecting personal stories of both LGBTQ+ and straight communities and will share advice from a mental health counselor on every story.
The personal stories are provided by Ukrainians who have lived the experience, which will be relevant to any LGBTQ+ person in any corner of the world. With the main focus on deep internal feelings, struggles and experiences, our mental health experts will offer insights into the nature of these emotions and practical tips to deal with them in a healthy way.
In the last 30 years, Ukrainian society has changed its mindset from total intolerance to a non-discriminatory tendency towards queer people. According to the 2022 report by the Nash Svit Center under the USAID/ENGAGE activity, the issue of equality and protection of LGBTQ+ rights in Ukraine is becoming increasingly important in both the domestic and foreign policy of Ukraine. The current war in Ukraine reveals even better that Ukrainians are united against any violence.
This project is aimed to help two groups:
- LGBTQ+ communities can contemplate issues and shared experiences that are common and stressful for different social groups;
- non-LGBTQ+ communities will have a chance to reflect on different situations that might have been challenging to understand.
Some topics covered:
- Self-identification by Alem
Stories about how people self-identified as queer, what they felt, and what difficulties they faced.
Alem is a journalist, as she said storyteller, she lives in the USA and she is queer, she is “someone who doesn’t live within strict labels”. Her Instagram account is here.
- Coming out by Yura
People share their coming-out stories and their reactions to them.
Yura is a director, activist, and co-founder of UKRAINEPRIDE. He lives in Ukraine. He is gay, he remembers realizing his orientation when he was 4 years old. His Instagram account is here.
- Discrimination and bullying by Julia
Two sides of this matter: the bully explains their motives and background that led to aggressive behavior, and the victim shares their feelings and point of view.
Julia is a content creator. She lives in the USA. Her Instagram account is here.
- How to talk to kids about gender by Alex
Personal stories of parents who have queer kids.
Alex is a photographer, actor, and fitness trainer. He lives in the USA. He is transgender, and has a husband and together they take care of 6 cute dogs. His Instagram account is here.
- LGBTQ+ stereotypes by Petro
Debunking popular stereotypes about the LGBTQ+ community and share stories of those, who used to be biased against this community, and explain what motivated them to change their opinions.
Petro is an influencer, restaurateur, and producer. He lives in Ukraine. He is heterosexual and has a son. He likes that gay guys think he is handsome. His Instagram account is here.
- LGBTQ+ people and military service by Pasha
We’ll learn from queer people, who decided to join military service.
Pasha is a mental health coach, and activist. He lives in Ukraine. Now he serves in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. He is gay.
His Instagram account is here.
“People of the LGBTQ+ community often face discrimination and a lack of understanding from society. To change that we’re so happy to partner with BetterMe for the course that educates on how to treat LGBTQ+ as well as shares their unique stories that help us understand them more. This way we hope to make the lives of our community and loved ones better!”, said Yuriy Dvizhon, co-founder of UKRAINEPRIDE NGO.
The main purpose of this project is to help people with different gender identities and sexual orientations find common ground and understand each other on a more profound level. The community we live in has an enormous impact on our quality of life. Embracing our differences is what can and will make this world a better place.
“Our main goal is to create a product that serves everyone, and one of our core values is inclusion and diversity. We personalize our content for different groups to make a healthy lifestyle as inclusive as possible”, said Victoria Repa, CEO, and Founder of BetterMe.
BetterMe is a leading Ukraine-based behavioral healthcare company taking care of the physical and mental health of 100M users worldwide. The company headquarters are located in Kyiv, Ukraine. The company has developed two supportive apps, BetterMe: Health Coaching and BetterMe: Mental Health. Recently, BetterMe Store apparel for sports, which will become an excellent motivation to start exercising, was launched.
UKRAINEPRIDE NGO is a pro-patriotic queer movement, that aimed to defend and nurture Ukrainian cultural identity and share it with counterparts from different countries, ethnicities, or religions. They preserve and protect our culture, so it is possible to share it with the whole world.