Further support for LGBTQ+ community with launch of Fingal Winter Pride

by Gazette Reporter
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Following the success of its inaugural Pride Festival earlier this year, Fingal County Council has announced that it will now be hosting a series of events over the winter months with the launch of Fingal Winter Pride.

The events have been organised to support LGBTQ+ community, friends and allies across Fingal. It will showcase the journey of pride and provide support through the provision of information at what is recognised as a particularly isolating time of year.

A highlight of Winter Pride will be the unveiling of the National Library’s photographic exhibition Living with Pride. The exhibition will be on show in Swords and then Blanchardstown on the first leg of a national tour. The exhibition – which depicts the journey of pride in Ireland from the early 1990s – features images taken by trailblazing LGBTQ+ and civil rights activist Chris Robson.

This free, ticketless event is open to the public and can be viewed from 24 January–6 February 2022 in County Hall, Swords before going on display from 7-22 February 2022 in Blanchardstown Library.

Deputy Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Daniel Whooley said: “We are delighted to be the first location to host the wonderful Living with Pride exhibition. The images capture the bravery, determination, and ingenuity of LGBTQ+ activists as they fought to promote and achieve equality for all in Ireland and bring about the decriminalisation of homosexuality. It provides a great reminder about the importance of inclusion in our County which is a remarkably diverse one.”

Through January and February 2022, several information and awareness raising sessions will take place across key locations in the County. The first event of these will be in Flemington Community Centre on the 25th of January 11am with the support of members of Dublin Pride, LGBTQ+ Ireland, Outcomers, the Pride Gardai and members of the LGBTQ+ community, its friends and allies. Other sessions will take place on:

  • 8 February 11am – 12.30pm The Cottage Community Centre, Lusk.
  • 15 February 11am – 12.30pm Swords Library
  • 22 February 11am – 12.30pm Blanchardstown Library

Chief Executive of Fingal County Council AnnMarie Farrelly said: “It’s great that we have been able to build on the success of our inaugural Fingal Pride event by now offering additional support and tea and coffee mornings as part of our Winter Pride programme. The Council is committed to supporting the LGBTQ+ community, particularly during isolating times, and these drop-in sessions will be particularly helpful to people in our community.”

As part of the Winter Pride campaign, Fingal’s 33 supported community centres will be dressed in Pride buntings along with ten libraries across the County. A memorial quilt celebrating the lives of people who have lost their lives during the height of the AIDS pandemic is also now on display at County Hall, Swords. The quilt is the result of friends, lovers, and families of those who had died of AIDS making individual panels honouring the memory of their loved ones which have then been sewn together to produce a colourful larger patchwork.

Fingal’s Integration Officer Valerie McAllorum Byrne said: “The idea behind hosting Fingal Winter Pride came about from our community training workshops back in June. We wanted to raise further awareness about the journey of pride and the feedback from the community pointed towards the importance of highlighting isolation as a key issue for the LGBTQ+ community, friends and allies during the winter months.”

Please visit: www.fingal.ie/integration for up-to-date information of what events are taking place throughout Fingal Winter Pride.

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