The RaRE Study

Big Lottery Fund LogoPACE has been funded by the Big Lottery to undertake a major research study on inequalities in mental health in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in England. 

The project, entitled the RaRE study, Risk and Resilience Explored: Understanding health inequalities in sexual minorities
is being undertaken at PACE in partnership with academics from Brunel, Aston, Greenwich and South Bank Universities. The study started in 2010 and will be completed in 2015.

Background to the project

Research has shown that compared to their heterosexual counterparts;

  • Young LGBT people are up to 3 times more likely to attempt suicide;
  • Lesbian and bisexual women are up to 4 times more likely to become alcohol dependent;
  • Gay and bisexual men are more at risk of eating disorders and body image problems than heterosexual men.

Project Aims

The overall aims of the study are to improve mental health support for LGBT people by influencing local and national policy and practice. The study aims to answer the following questions regarding the above health inequalities:

  • Which LGBT people are experiencing these problems?
  • What are the predictive (risk) factors for these problems?
  • What protective (resilience) factors seem to prevent people from experiencing these problems?
  • Are the predictive and protective factors different between LGBT and heterosexual people?
  • Comparing predictive and protective factors for LGBT people between problems, what similarities and differences exist?
  • What interventions might be effective to help reduce these health inequalities?


There are several key stages to the study:

  1. A literature review to identify existing research and knowledge;
  2. In-depth interviews with a small sample of LGBT people with the problems under study living in England;
  3. A survey of people who have experienced these problems from the LGBT and heterosexual communities in England;
  4. In-depth interviews with people whose experience does not match what is expected to test the robustness of our theoretical model and to identify areas for further research.

A small number of volunteers and freelance paid workers will be needed to work on this project.

Project Bulletins

Project bulletins will be posted on this site at key stages of the study.

For further information

Please direct any enquiries to the project administrator:

Flavio Silva on 020 7715 0364

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