A MISS Wales finalist from Chirk is raising funds and awareness for an LGBT+ anti-violence charity during Pride month.

Lauren Parkinson will aim to run or walk 100 miles throughout the month of June to mark the annual awareness month, and is hoping to raise £250 for Galop UK through her effort.

Galop has offered support to people in the LGBT+ community for 30 years, and after becoming aware of the work the charity does, Lauren is hoping her fundraising efforts will be able to raise awareness for LGBT+-focused charities.

She explained: "With it being Pride month, rather than just posting a rainbow and commenting Happy Pride Month, and with it being so personal to me, I feel that more action has got to be taken to support LGBTQIA+ charities.

"I found this charity Galop through a friend of mine, and they support victims of hate crimes and domestic violence, and they also support children that are part of the community.

"It’s an LGBT-based charity and they support people and signpost them to ways they can find help.

"It’s very important to have that service available. I’m an Ask Me Ambassador for Welsh Women’s Aid, and they support women from homosexual relationships, but they don’t specifically deal with the LGBT community.

"People in the community need someone they can relate to and speak to, and it’s amazing to have a charity just based on that."

Lauren became aware of a network of charities which offer support to individuals in the LGBT+ community through an app called Clubhouse.

Through the app, Lauren was able to connect with many others in the community who focus on promoting charities which focus on helping those in the LGBT+ community.

She said:"Clubhouse has chat rooms where you use your own voice as a voice message and you are able to engage with other people from the LGBT community.

"Through engaging in those chat rooms, I was able to find there is a world of other charities which aren’t necessarily as well-known.

"It’s nice to be able to support a charity like Galop."

Lauren hopes the support shown during Pride month can be extended throughout the year.

She added: "I know people posting rainbow-themed things on social media is still raising awareness – but even though we have Pride month, it is something which needs to be focused on for 365 days of the year."

To support Lauren's fundraiser, visit https://protect-eu.mimecast.com/s/cjXqCD1OOi9xyyVfWOeEf