Members of the national LGBTI+ youth strategy grand marshals. Pictured, Munister Katherine Zappone, Ruan Oliver Walsh, Katie McCabe, Jay Pope and Seamus Byrne
MEMBERS of the panel who advise the LGBTI youth strategy will lead Limerick’s Pride parade this year.
Set for Saturday, July 15, the parade will form the centrepiece of Limerick’s annual festival celebrating lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex culture (LGBTI+) culture.
The theme of this year’s pride festival, which will launch on Monday. July 10, is focused on LGBTQ youth.
The event will specifically focus on young gay people in the city – but the organisers have called on Pride to be an “inclusive, open and integrated event, welcoming all regardless of their sexual or gender orientation ,religion or race.”
The aim of the LGBTI youth strategy is to address the challenges and needs faced by young members of Ireland’s LGBTI community.
Working with youngsters from across Ireland, the strategy, it is hoped, will ensure all young LGBTI people can realise their potential in terms of their physical and mental well being.
Richard Lynch, festival PRO said: “I picked these people because I firmly believe the youth are our future. I wanted to give them a platform to speak about the issues affecting them not just now but into the future. They are being given a voice in shaping their own future. And this is what pride is ultimately about: empowerment, inclusivity and equal rights for all people.”
At least eight parade grand marshals will descend on Limerick from the panel, aged between 16 and 23.
Separately, the Limerick Youth Service has teamed up with Goshh to host the city’s only Pride Youth Party the night before the parade, on Friday, July 14. Aimed at 14 to 19 year olds, the party takes place between 6pm and 9pm at the Lava Java’s youth cafe at Lower Glentworth Street.