Today, Wednesday 17 May, is International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. It’s a day to recognise that while the rights of the LGBTQI+ people have significantly advanced in recent decades, progress remains patchy and geographically uneven. It is easy to see homophobia, biphobia and transphobia as something that happens ‘elsewhere’ but IDAHOBIT day prompts us to look closer to home. Today is a chance to celebrate LGBTIQ people globally, and raise awareness for the work still needed.

Here at Catalyst we are creating our own rainbow of colour to raise awareness of the work that’s still needed to combat discrimination, and to celebrate the organisations and charities who do amazing work to support LGBTQIA+ communities. Every rainbow activity makes a difference and creates important LGBTQIA+ visibility and inclusion.

Here at Catalyst we want to shine a light on Hart Gables and the amazing work they do as a support service for those who identify as LGBTQ+ across Teesside and East Durham. They work to ensure that all LGBTQ+ people are given equal life chances and have services that meet their needs. They do this through supporting the local community, working with partner organisations and delivering award winning awareness training across the UK. Find out more here

We also want to do a shout out for Curious Arts is a Newcastle Gateshead based charity championing and developing Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual + arts, artists and audiences across the North East of England and beyond. Curious Arts are working with a group of volunteers and organisations including Catalyst to make a pilot “Pop-Up” Stockton Pride happen this Summer! Have your say here… All responses are appreciated and will support us to shape a test event this year and future activities that celebrate and represent the Tees Valley’s LGBTQIA+ communities.

To celebrate today we wanted to showcase the flag designed by Daniel Quasar, a graphic designer. In 2018 Daniel dramatically redesigned the flag. In addition to the black and brown stripes, he also added stripes of pink, light blue and white from the transgender (trans) flag. This new flag called the Progress Pride Flag was designed to also represent the LGBT+ communities of colour, people living with AIDS, people no longer living and the trans community. The main section is left as the six-stripe flag, and the chevron on the left with the new colours was designed to represent the ongoing march towards progress.


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