By Veronika Galeva
Single Step, the first successful LGBTI foundation in a ‘communist hungover ‘country such as Bulgaria, founded by Ivan Dimov.
After living in the USA for 25 years, Ivan Dimov decides to return to his country on a vacation. On a night out he met a troubled teenage boy, who wanted to share his story. He told Ivan that he came out to his mother, expecting her to help him, but instead she took him to a psychiatrist who told him that she can cure his illness. The boy ran away from home and tried to commit suicide. ‘To say that his story stunned me would be an understatement. I wanted to know what kids like him do in situation like this’, Ivan shared. After the encounter he decided that it’s time for a change, so he returned back to Bulgaria, where he established Single Step. ‘In the USA charity is related to sports, so to start the foundation I ran 12 marathons, 42 km each, in 12 weeks in order to raise money. The next challenge was to complete 10 000 repetitions of pull ups, push-ups and squats, which took me 15 hours’.
By Jess Clayton-Berry
ANGRY Essex University Academics have taken to picketing outside the university entrances to fight for their pension rights.
The first day of a month-long pension strike by members of the University and College Union (UCU) began on the 22nd of February, which sees pickets placed outside university entrances, encouraging others to join in the protest.
The need to take such action has arisen after pension fund manager, Universities UK (UUK), proposed changes to the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) that the Union believes could leave lecturers having up to £10,000 a year taken off in their retirement pension.
According to the UCU, younger academics are due to be even worse off, potentially losing 53% of their pensions.
University of Essex lecturers have joined 61 other universities currently striking over the dispute in a bid to make university heads negotiate a better deal.
Alex Meyer, MEP for East of England
By HK Norman
East of England MEP Alex Mayer is set to issue a warning to bosses at Anglian Water on Monday, criticising the planned closures to staff pension schemes.
The firm has announced the closure of their “Defined Benefits” pension scheme and further changes to their “Defined Contributions” scheme, which will affect 5,000 employees at Anglian Water.
By Jacob Ottaway
An Ipswich family have teamed up to fundraise money for the charity Facial Palsy UK, and have already made half of their £1000 target, with 9 months to go. The Reid family, from the Stoke Park area of Ipswich, are comprised of Paul and Kim, with their daughters Aimee (now Stannard) and Chloe. Chloe, 18, is all too familiar with Facial Palsy; a condition that usually entails the weakening or paralysis of muscles in one side of the face, isn’t exactly uncommon, with roughly 20,000 people a year being affected by Bell’s Palsy – the most common type of Facial Palsy.
By Kai Wei Cheng
Over 50 people showed up in full support of the women’s only swimming sessions at Colchester Leisure World on Sunday the 11th of February.
Members of the Colchester Citizens Alliance- the local branch of Citizens UK who organises communities to act together for power, social justice and the common good- gathered the supporters right before the front doors to Colchester Leisure World (CLW) where they campaigned for truly women’s only swim sessions.