Featured events

7-9 September 2012
Brussels Games

Brussels Gay Sports will offer a weekend of fun and fairplay in the capital of Europe, with volleyball, swimming, badminton, and tennis, as well as fitness and hiking.

Learn more HERE.
26-28 October 2012
Bern, Switzerland

The success of the first edition of the QueergamesBern proved the need for an LGBT multisport event in Switzerland. This year will be even bigger, with badminton, bowling, running, walking, floorball.

Learn more HERE.
17-20 January 2013
Sin City Shootout
Las Vegas
The 7th Sin City Shootout will feature softball, ice hockey, tennis, wrestling, basketball, dodgeball, bodybuilding and basketball.

Learn more HERE.

13-16 June 2013
IGLFA Euro Cup
After this year's edition in Budapest at the EuroGames, the IGLFA Euro Cup heads to Dublin for 2013, hosted by the Dublin Devils and the Dublin Phoenix Tigers.

Learn more HERE.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

More on Blake Skjellerup and "Pink Shirt Day" in New Zealand

From Blake's blog on HyperVocal:

"Pink Shirt Day: Blake Skjellerup Does Some Good " Oh wait, that’s me.

Mahatma Ghandi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Yes, I started with a Ghandi quote.

So here is the change I want to see in the world:

I want every difference to be celebrated, not challenged. I want the youth of the world to know that whatever they are feeling, whatever they are thinking, that it is completely natural. I do not want anyone to be persecuted for being themselves.


From the Nelson Mail:

Olympic skater talks about bullying of gay students
Last updated 13:00 06/04/2011

Olympic speed skater Blake Skjellerup is putting an off-season break from the sport to good use, using his profile to campaign against homophobic bullying. After speaking at his first school assembly, at Nelson College, Mr Skjellerup spent part of yesterday afternoon with a group of about 30 members of the Nayland Alliance of Queers and Straights (NAGS).

He said the group was a fantastic example of what could be done at schools to support gay students. "They are all very mature and all very aware. Support groups like that are invaluable, just looking at the success of it and how students have approached it and really flourished." He said it had taken him a long time to feel OK about his sexuality when he was younger and students shouldn't feel bad about being gay.

Support groups like NAGS, which has run since 2002, were an example for newer organisations like the recently announced Nelson College group, he said.

Q-Youth Drop-In Centre co-ordinator and former Nayland College student Tabby Besley said it was great to have a role model like Mr Skjellerup at the school and speaking to the group.

Mr Skjellerup will speak at a full Nayland College school assembly next Thursday for Pink Shirt Day.

And also from the Nelson Mail:

Boys' college backs gay, straight students

Nelson College is believed to have made history by becoming the first all-boys' school in New Zealand to have a support group for gay and straight students. The announcement came at an assembly yesterday, where Olympic speed skater and gay role model Blake Skjellerup was speaking as part of his campaign against homophobic bullying.

During the assembly, several senior students, including the head boy and deputy head boy, stood up and announced the creation of a new college-based group for straight and gay students, similar to those in other schools in the region. Mr Skjellerup applauded the move and said the visit had been positive.

Headmaster Gary O'Shea said the creation of the group was a natural progression for the school. "There are openly gay boys here. You are in a complex environment where you hope everyone's safe."

Mr O'Shea said it was a student-driven initiative, and he was proud of the boys for putting forward the idea. "It's kids who asked for it. I don't know how parents will feel about it, but it's about support. If they can't accept it, then they can't accept it."

Q-Youth executive director Seb Stewart said he believed the move was a first for an all-boys' school in New Zealand. "It's an enormous step. It's the best news that I have heard for a very long time," he said. Mr Stewart said it was an honour to have a role model like Mr Skjellerup in Nelson promoting safe schools. "I think it's one thing to be successful in any field and there's no doubt that Blake is an incredible athlete, but it's another thing altogether to use that success and celebrity to help others."

Mr Skjellerup said it was great to be in Nelson and spreading his message. When speaking to schools, Mr Skjellerup drew on his own life experience of being bullied as a teenager. "When I was in high school, I was bullied for being gay and it was mentally challenging for me to deal with that. "It was not until I was 22 that I realised that I could be gay and live my life happily," Mr Skjellerup said. "Sport was something that helped me and kept me going. At times, I was extremely lonely."

While in Nelson, Mr Skjellerup is also co-ordinating a national letter-writing campaign, encouraging young people to write to Prime Minister John Key with their own stories of bullying and how it has affected their well-being.

For details of the campaign, see pinkshirtday.org.nz.

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