Last month, the University of the Philippines Diliman celebrated a community that provided acceptance for LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) persons through Pride Week, beginning June 25 to 28, 2013.
Themed “Live Free, You’re Safe in UP,” the annual event spearheaded five years ago by UP Babaylan, the “leading support group” for the LGBT rights in UP, is now also led by the University Student Council (USC).
The whirlwind of activities sought to promote the campus as a safe zone for LGBT persons, as well as a model for the rest of the country to emulate. Among the events that highlighted the celebration were the book launch of Anong Pangalan Mo Sa Gabi? by UP Babaylan and the Center for Women’s Studies; a forum titled “Ang Paglalantad (The reveal)” with speakers from UP Babaylan, the Diliman Gender Office, and Ichtus; and a discussion on the anti-discrimination bill organized by the UP Economics Towards Consciousness. A free screening of pink films provided entertainment on Friday, with UP Kalikha and the UP Art Studies Society at the helm.
Over 400 persons attended the Pride March on June 27, where participants campaigned for anti-discrimination policies in and outside the university.
The highlight of the week was Friday night’s (June 28) Project Genderway, an LGBT fashion show held by UP Babaylan, USC, the UP Association of Clothing Technology Students, and the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy Student Council. Mega Young Designers competition winners and UP Babaylan alumni Renan Pacson and Mara Chua featured their creations on the catwalk.