June is internationally known as Pride Month, when we focus on the achievements of people in the LGBTQIA+ community. LGBTQIA+ rights have come a long way, but there is still a lot of work to be done. That’s why it’s important for all of us to keep learning and growing, during Pride Month and the rest of the year.
Supporting LGBTQIA+ rights is not just important during the month of June. It’s about how you show up for queer people every day.
However, this month is a good opportunity to have conversations and learn more about the history and importance of Pride. Here are ten things you can do this Pride Month, both as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community or as an ally.
|1. Attend a parade or event|
|2. Learn more about LBGTQIA+ history|
|3. Support queer artists or businesses|
|4. Share information on queer history|
|5. Contribute to an LGBTQIA+ charity|
|6. Host events|
|7. Show your support|
|8. Organize a book club session|
|9. Enjoy a movie night|
|10. Check on your LGBTQIA+ friends and be kind to yourself|
1. Attend a parade or event
Not only are Pride parades entertaining and fun, they’re also a very important part of queer history. Pride started out as a riot and it’s still a way for marginalized groups to get together and let their voices be heard.
Most cities will host Pride events all throughout the month, so find one you like and you’ll have the best time! You can join different kinds of activities, from big parties to small discussion panels. These events are a great example of the diversity of the LGBTQIA+ community.
2. Learn more about LGBTQIA+ history
This month can be a great opportunity to actively make some time to educate yourself on LGBTQIA+ matters. Whether you identify as LGBTQIA+ or you want to be an ally, learning about queer history can help you understand past and current challenges and can help you have conversations around them. A great place to start is the history of Pride, a movement that started with the Stonewall Riots in New York in 1969.
3. Support queer artists or businesses
The ways in which you can support queer artists are truly endless. Small businesses need to be seen and appreciated, so share them on social media, recommend them to family and friends or purchase their products. You can also buy tickets to an LGBTQIA+ themed show, read books by queer authors or visit an LGBTQIA+ gallery. By actively supporting these artists and businesses, you can make a massive difference to those communities.
4. Share information on queer history
One of the easiest and most effective things you can do to show your support is share information on LGBTQIA+ matters and queer history. This can be as simple as sharing an interesting article on social media or recommending a video or essay to others. Just make sure that the information you share is published by a reliable source.
5. Contribute to an LGBTQIA+ charity
LGBTQIA+ charities do incredible work, but they need a lot of financial and practical support. You can help with that! Of course, donations are a great way to help out and help the advancement of LGBTQIA+ rights, but if you want to help out in a different way, dedicate some of your time. Many non-profit organizations are constantly looking for volunteers with all kinds of skills. So find a charity that works with issues close to your heart and find out how you can contribute!
Some non-profit organizations:
6. Host events
If you want to give back to the community by hosting your own event, there are so many options! You could organize a fundraiser at work, invite some friends and play a trivia game or quiz, or create a playlist of everyone’s favorite songs by queer artists. These activities are the perfect way to spend quality time together, share experiences and learn about queer history at the same time.
7. Show your support
If you’re an active ally of the LGBTQIA+ community, it’s important to speak up whenever you can and it’s safe to do so. This can be in big ways like organizing events or marching during protests, but also something as quick and simple as adding the pronouns that you want people to use to refer to you to your social media bio and email signature, or engaging in conversations, makes a difference. You can also add small but significant decorations, like a rainbow flag, to your home or office.
Being a good ally is not about getting everything right. It’s about showing that you care and that you’re willing to keep learning.
8. Organize a book club session
Whether you like to read fiction or you’re more into educational and historical books, one of the best ways to gain insight into queer experiences is by reading. Books can inform, educate, entertain and challenge. So choose a couple of books that seem interesting to you and, if you can, check if some of your friends, family members or colleagues want to join you in reading and discussing them.
Some of our favorite titles:
- Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin
- Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
- The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith
- The Transgender Issue by Shon Faye
- Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman
- In The Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado
- How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS by David France
- Stonewall: The Definitive Story of the LGBTQ Rights Uprising that Changed America by Martin Duberman
- The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
9. Enjoy a movie night
If you’re not the biggest book lover, no worries! Watching a film or TV show together is both an exciting social activity and a good opportunity to develop a greater understanding of LGBTQIA+ experiences. Snuggle up with blankets and snacks and get lost in one of these:
- Paris is Burning
- Disclosure: Trans Lives On Screen
- Queer Eye
- The L Word
- Schitt’s Creek
- Killing Eve
- It’s a Sin
10. Check on your LGBTQIA+ friends and be kind to yourself
The two most important things you can do this Pride Month is be kind to yourself and to check on your LGBTQIA+ friends. The fight for equality is far from over and this can be exhausting or overwhelming at times. So don’t feel like you have to actively be doing things and debating heavy topics all the time. Sometimes the best thing to do is to step back and rest. Just being there for each other, listening, validating each other’s experiences and showing each other that you care is what matters most.
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