My name is Jasper Williams and I am the current LGBT Officer (open place) at the National Union of Students Wales.
NUS Wales is a movement of a quarter of a million higher education students, further education students, and apprentices across the country.
Together, we shape the work, defend the welfare and deliver campaigns for and with students. The LGBT liberation campaign works specifically on issues that affect lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans students in Wales.
Over the last year, I have created a toolkit for asexuality workshops; organised vigils for trans day of remembrance; hosted and been on panels for LGBT disability; and worked on increasing non-alcoholic LGBT spaces.
This year, I will be focusing on increasing LGBT survivor support, improving estranged students’ welfare, raising awareness of invisible illnesses in LGBT students, and tackling LGBT phobia in further education.
So why am I embarking all the way to Llanelli from Bangor to join their Pride celebration?
Pride is a series of events that happen in cities big and small, symbolising action that started after the 1969 Stonewall Riots in New York City when LGBT people fought back against police brutality.
Since then Pride has expanded around the globe.
This celebration of life, love and liberty isn’t just about parades and partying. It’s about the LGBT community being visible and belonging to a community, a town, a city, a nation and the world
It’s about spreading hope that not only are things getting better but things will continue to improve because we won’t forget the battles, the lives lost and the pain suffered that now affords us a growing list of equal rights in the UK.
Pride matters because it’s a time when LGBT communities come together and reflect on how far they’ve come as well as acknowledge how much more there is still to do.
Sometimes it’s a celebration, sometimes it’s a political statement and often it’s a mixture of the two.
The first time I attended a Pride after coming out was a deeply meaningful experience for me. Being at Pride wasn’t just about having fun; it was a declaration of personal self-acceptance.
It was a declaration that I really was a part of the LGBT community and I didn’t want to hide it anymore. It was an amazing feeling to spend a whole day with LGBT people who were celebrating being out and open about themselves.
Pride is the celebration of life, human rights and ultimately the right to love whoever we want. That is always worth celebrating.
If anyone would like to contact Jasper, then please email Jasper.Williams@nuswales.org.uk
Saturday 5th LGBT Day in Spring Gardens
Sponsored by Carmarthenshire County Council, West Wales Trade Sales, Castell Howell Foods and The Big Lottery.
Open to the Public from 11am, starts at 12:
. Acts: Fighting Fifth Husky, Corrin Casini, The Otherside and Johnny Velvet
The Llanelli LGBT Support Project aims to set up a regular drop in session for LGBTs, give Llanelli LGBTs the ability to comment via all platforms, increase LGBT community participation, and publicise Llanelli LGBT Support via attendance at events.
If anyone would like to volunteer or find out more then please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit https://www.facebook.com/LlanelliLGBT