Volunteering at London Pride 2013

Giacomo's picture

London Pride was an amazing and colorful experience. Pride's theme of this year was dedicated to ‘Love (and Marriage)' to celebrate the positive steps towards equal marriage in the UK, as well as in various countries around the world. More than fifty events have been taking place throughout June and July as part of the Pride in London festival.

My role as volunteer involved insuring the parade ran smoothly, to enchant the audience and give information out to those who asked. Volunteers were given a t-shirt & a badge, and we were divided into groups of 5 or 6 people with a senior steward leading each one.

The parade started at 1.00pm and went along Oxford Street to Oxford Circus, moved down Regent Street and along Pall Mall, then to Trafalgar Square and finally ended in Whitehall at around 4.00pm. Over 150 groups had registered to take part in the parade, and many organizations joined the event as well.

After the parade, people than moved to Trafalgar Square where there was a big stage and different artists were performing. Soho soon became full of people having food and drinks. The after party took place in many venues around London and it was a great time to meet new people and celebrate Pride together.

Promoting Diversity

Pride could be seen, in fact, as a great party to promote diversity, embracing people of every race and faith, whether disabled or able-bodied, and all sexualities and genders. It's a celebration of creativity, energy and achievements. Each year over 100 groups take part in the Parade to celebrate the ongoing fight for equality. The event helps underline the love and support that exists within the LGBT+ community and their friends and families.

However, apart from the colourful side of the event, Pride was also a political protest against countries where homosexuality is still illegal and same-sex marriage is still not socially approved. Pride is, thus, also an essential political weapon to raise voices, condemn those governments which restrict human rights to only part of the population and exclude LGBT members. This kind of demonstration is essential to fight against any form of trans/homo-phobia and verbal and physical bullying happening around the world.

Finally, I would like to thank all those who made Pride 2013 possible and I look forward to next year's celebration. However, in the meantime, citizens should all engage with the defence of human rights on a daily basis and, fight for a brighter and more accepting world for the LGBT community.

Giacomo Tirelli is an Italian student in his first year at Goldsmiths University in London. You can read more of his posts here and follow him on Twitter @giacomotirelli_.

Share with friends