Greene King Donates £10,000 to LGBTQ+ Charity Switchboard

Greene King has this month donated £10,000 to LGBTQ+ charity Switchboard, raised through the sales of its limited-edition Progress Pale Ale in Greene King pubs.

The pub company and brewer first launched Progress Pale Ale on a limited run in 2021 to celebrate Pride and raise money for Switchboard LGBTQ+, with 20p of every pint and 10p of every bottle sold donated to the charity.

Due to its success, a second run of the ale went on sale last summer and has since resulted in a further £10,000 donation to the charity.

The funds raised will go towards supporting the ever-increasing caller volumes that Switchboard is currently facing from members of the LGBTQ+ community and beyond. Whether it’s a personal challenge or one facing a friend or family member, Switchboard talk to people across the UK wishing to discuss issues ranging from sexuality, gender identity, mental and sexual health, isolation and more.

Switchboard is run mostly by volunteers and provides a confidential and non-judgemental helpline for LGBTQ+ people looking for a sense of community, support or information, 365 days a year.

The development and launch of Progress Pale Ale, which was named after the Progress Pride flag, was driven by The Village Greene – Greene King’s LGBTQ+ employee-led inclusion group, which champions and supports lesbian, gay, bi and trans team members.

Village Greene has helped the national pub company and brewer take positive, practical steps towards everyday inclusion – such as encouraging team members to share pronouns on email signatures, and providing them with a range of easily accessible internal resources to enable them to learn more about gender and sexual identity.

Scott Frankham, Village Greene Lead at Greene King, said: “The work Switchboard does is incredibly important for the LGBTQ+ community, and we’re proud to have raised another £10,000 to support the charity through sales of Progress Pale Ale.

“As the heart of local communities, pubs play a vital role in supporting the LGBTQ+ community, and the Village Greene employee-led inclusion group will continue to ensure inclusivity is at the core of all we do, to help promote allyship between team members and support our guests to feel a sense of belonging.”

Steph Fuller, General Manager at Switchboard, the national LGBTQ+ helpline said: “The £10,000 donation from Greene King means that we will be able to meet the ever-rising demand for our services in these difficult times for the LGBTQ+ communities. With Greene King’s generosity we’re able to onboard more volunteers than ever in our recent history.”

“We are delighted that Greene King has continued to support us and raise awareness of the service we provide and look forward to continuing to work together.”