Besides the very cool celebration of Roze Zaterdag at the Coolsingel, Rotterdam Pride also remains a protest. Because the LGBTQIA+ community still has a long way to go towards full acceptance and equal rights. The Rotterdam Pride foundation emphasizes the protest with the Rotterdam Pride Conference in the Kunsthal.
From Wednesday, June 22 to Saturday, June 25 the Kunsthal is the stage for several panel discussions and talks on topics such as mental health, trans health care, and how Rotterdam can be an inclusive city for everyone. Most of the eleven different components are in Dutch. But there are two interesting panel discussions in English.
On June 22 there is Behind Europe’s Rainbow Curtain. It’s about queer refugees. Photographer Ilvy Njiokiktjien is also present. Last March she went to Lviv in Ukraine to cover the LGBTQI community in Lviv as they cope with the consequences of the Russian invasion.
The Only Gay in Football is the title of an event on June 23. Josh Cavallo (Adelaide United) talks about coming out as a footballer. Also present are analyst Leonne Stentler, Jacintha Weimar (player of the Feyenoord women’s team) and, Paul van Dorst (founder of Roze Kameraden, a gay fan group for Feyenoord). Presenter Winfried Baijens will moderate.
Tickets for all events cost five euros, one euro will be donated to LGBT Asylum Support. A ticket also grants you permission to the Kunsthal on June 24 for the exhibition by French artist, writer, and activist Claude Cahun.
More than a conference
Other activist elements of Rotterdam Pride are the community events. The Rotterdam Pride foundation is community-driven. This means that the organization wants to give the LGBTQIA+ community the space and opportunity to think about the future of queer Rotterdam. They do this during several events and projects. Saturday, June 18, before Roze Zaterdag starts, the annual Pride March starts. This is a peaceful protest for the rights and acceptance of the LGBTQIA+ community in the Netherlands and worldwide. This year, the Pride March is organized by COC Rotterdam, Out in Rotterdam, Erasmus Pride and Ketelbinkie. Rotterdam Pride will definitely participate. At 11:30 AM the march begins with a manifestation at the Willemsplein near the diversity monument, after which a route leads to the Coolsingel so that participants can immediately visit Pink Saturday.