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For another year we are honoring LGBT heritage; I’m looking forward to celebrating Pride Month (June). Pride is basically a period of reflection and planning, planning for the things that we are yet to accomplish and to face the hurdles that we are yet to overcome as we continue the fight for our basic human rights.
You can celebrate Pride however you want, but hey, if you want to join the crowd, there are a number of exciting things you can do – you have the opportunity to meet people, learn about LGBT history and do whatever liberates you.
This year is also the year that we celebrate the first anniversary of the legalization of gay marriage.
But down to business, what can you do to make this pride special? Here are five suggestions:
1. Activism/Volunteering – volunteering is a good way to meet people and learn about the LGBT community. Volunteering at Pride events in your town or school, also helps in community building. There may also be the opportunity to learn new skills. And with new experience, who knows, you may be able to discover new hobbies and interest.
Activism may be as simple as talking to friends, school mates or family members about the importance of gay rights; supporting LGBT art and culture. In addition, you can support or join outreach groups. For more info on how to be an advocate visit http://www.care2.com/causes/7-tips-on-how-to-be-an-lgbt-rights-advocate.html
2. Read – Take some time off from the hustle and bustle – RELAX and READ! Read about LGBT history and iconic historical figures. I promise there are really great LGBT related books that will make you laugh and cry. “Kicked Out”, maybe? A book that features young LGBT homeless youth telling their stories. Where to start? Go to the library and pick up a book or if you have a local Pride center, ask staff or volunteers for help on other recommended books.
3. Watch movies and documentaries – A good way to connect with the community is to watch LGBT movies and documentaries. It’s amazing how much you can learn. Watching documentaries that focuses on historical events, such as the stonewall riots and the drag queens who were involved, the Aids epidemic of the 1980s, Mathew Shepherd, among others, is a good place to start.
Some recommended movies, includes Paris is Burning, Milk, Brokeback Mountain, Pride, Boy Culture, Rent and Stud Life.
4. Attend Pride events – Whether at school, church, libraries or a trip to The Big Apple (New
York City Pride), you can make a commitment to attend at least one pride event. There are cookouts, parties and family friendly events all over Connecticut this month. Take a look at this list http://connecticut.cbslocal.com/top-lists/top-lgbt-pride-events-in-connecticut/
5. Support a Friend – You don’t have to be LGBT to offer emotional support to a LGBT friend – BE AN ALLY! LGBT or not, be a friend to someone this Pride Month and maybe do something together.
Happy Pride Month!!!
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