Join me and the rest of the team from the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity for cruising down the gorgeous Ottawa River, drinks, and the opportunity to meet Gilbert Baker: the creator of the Rainbow Pride flag!
Having travelled to parts of the world where queer and trans folks are criminalized, the Rainbow Pride flag has a special significance for me. When I set foot in a new country and I see this flag, it means that I can feel safe there, I can freely share who I am with people, and that my community is prominent there. This summer I travelled from Serbia to The Netherlands and the wave of relief when I saw the first Rainbow Pride flag in The Hague was palpable.
I did not even realize how on edge I was in a place where Pride is banned by the government (although brave activists continue to work for LGBTQ+ rights). For instance, I would only discreetly reference my partners and instead of telling strangers that I work for The Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity, I would vaguely reference anti-bullying and human rights work in an effort to ensure my safety. Seeing the Rainbow Pride flag in The Netherlands allowed me to flip an internal switch from survival to activism and authenticity. I am excited to hear Gilbert Baker’s story of the creation of this flag in 1978; join me to hear this story of a powerful symbol for our community!
Fresh from Amsterdam Pride and their famous Canal Pride, I am excited to see many people from our own Ottawa-based community on the water to engage in this discussion, show their true colours, and party in a space where we are all proud of who we are!
Moreover, the proceeds from the Pride Boat Cruise will go towards educating youth about gender and sexual minorities, anti-bullying, diversity, anti-oppression, and mental and sexual health. We need the help of this community to make Canada a safer and more inclusive country for ALL youth. Your support enables us to continue and expand our work, allowing us to go to more remote locations and work with more community partners! I hope to see you there!
Notes: This is a fully accessible, family-friendly, bilingual event. Should you have any questions, please let us know. For media or partnership inquiries, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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