The capital’s Uber Boat by Thames Clippers is set to play host to special, family-friendly drag shows raising much-needed funds for homeless LGBTQIA+ youth, with drag queens offering live lip-sync entertainment for Londoners and visitors alike.
As part of its ongoing support of the Albert Kennedy Trust (akt), Pride at Uber is staging Uber Boat by Thames Clippers’ maiden drag voyage on 10 September. All proceeds from the drag journeys that day will go towards helping LGBTQIA+ youth in London.
Pride at Uber teamed up with akt to create the special service as it commits to offering everyone the opportunity to travel safely and without fear. Across England, Uber has already partnered with akt to give free rides to the charity for workers and individuals in need throughout the year, not just during Pride season.
The initiative is launching at a particularly hard time for homeless LGBTQIA+ youth. Since the pandemic began, akt has seen referrals soar by 118%, and it’s estimated that some 24% of homeless youth in the UK identify as LGBTQIA+.
When lockdown was enforced, many LGBTQIA+. people were forced to spend more time at home, creating tensions in cases where they felt they couldn’t express their true identity. A YouGov survey in partnership with akt showed that 61% of young LGBTQIA+ people who have experienced homelessness felt threatened or frightened by family members, while half (50%) feared they would be evicted by their families if they revealed their true identity.
Robert Downer, Global Chair of Pride at Uber, said: “With Pride in London being cancelled this year, it’s even more important to support the LGBTQIA+ community. We gladly support the Albert Kennedy Trust’s vital work all year round, and can’t wait to set sail on our special Uber Boat by Thames Clippers service.”
Carrie Reiners, Deputy CEO at akt, said: “Homelessness among the LGBTQIA+ community aged 16-23 is an ever-increasing problem, and all donations from these special journeys will help to ensure that no young person has to choose between a safe home and being who they are.”
Those who want to attend the show should hop on at any of the following stops and can purchase a ticket using the Uber app:
17.09pm: North Greenwich Pier, Westbound
18.05pm: Westminster Pier, Eastbound
19.08pm: Woolwich Pier, Westbound (finishing at 20.25pm at Westminster Pier)
Uber not only offers support to akt, but has also endeavoured to make meaningful, positive changes to its app operations and business. Across the world, Uber has committed free rides and meals to 20 LGBTQIA+ organisations, while a special driver inclusion team helps drivers whose official identification documents may not match their real-life gender identity.