The official timeframe of the ‘Pride In Sport’ project, led by the European Gay and Lesbian Sport Federation (EGLSF), has officially concluded. The project is aimed at preventing and fighting homophobic violence and discrimination in sport and has been funded as part of the European Commission’s preparatory actions in the field of sport.
As Armelle Mazé, EGLSF Female Co President explains: “Pride in Sport is a collective project which incorporated a number of activities across Europe with the aim to tackle prejudice and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender people in sport. We were delighted with our success in receiving the funding and even more so with the outcomes of the work.”
EGLSF was joined by a number of partners from throughout the EU who have lead on the delivery of different aspects of the initiative. The French National LGBT Sport Federation, FSGL, hosted an academic colloquium in December 2011 to launch the project, whilst UK LGBT sports development & equality organisation, Pride Sports, hosted the EGLSF’s “Against the Rules” exhibition at Pride House during the London Olympic Games. The exhibition was visited not only by Olympic and Paralympic athletes, but also representatives from LOCOG, the Danish Sports Minister and UK Member of Parliament, Simon Hughes.
Other ‘Pride In Sport’ partners included FARE, Europe’s anti-discrimination campaign for football, Frankfurter Volleyball Verein, one of Europe’s most established LGBT sports clubs, and from Central and Eastern Europe, the LGBT sport initiatives Out In Slovenia and Atlasz Budapest.
Pride In Sport has also engaged a further sixteen organisations in the delivery of good practice projects, a summary of these having been drawn into a handbook outlining the achievements of grass roots organisations tackling discrimination in their localities, whilst a series of fact sheets for sports federations give practical advice in making sport more LGBT inclusive. The initiative has also seen the development of an anti-discrimination gaming app for the android platform, targeting especially young people aged 11-16, as well as others as end users. The official launch of the game is foreseen to be on May 17, the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO).
“So much of the work of tackling discrimination in sport is about education, and young people are the key to making sport a welcoming place for lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender people,” concludes Klaus Heusslein, EGLSF Male Co-President.
Although the project and EU funding has come to an end, EGLSF and its partners will continue working on the issue and are committed to disseminate the outcomes of this project and other activities.