It looks like LGBTQ-themed sports competitions are coming to Africa.
While Hong Kong and Asia will be getting the official Gay Games for the first time in 2022, Africa is creating its own Gay Games.
Durban, South Africa will be hosting the inaugural AfroGames this weekend. The event starts today and will continue until Monday, December 10th.
All sports and cultural events will be held at UKZN Howard College’s campus. Unfortunately, there are limited funds for this year’s games, so only five sports will be hosted; netball, soccer, rugby, athletics, and squash. That said, there are a few cultural events as well. This includes an LGBTQI symposium Decolonizing LGBTI Rights in Africa, which will be held on International Human Rights Day.
The mission of AfroGames 2018 is “to promote equality, acceptance and pride through the organizations of a premiere African LGBTI+ and gay-friendly sports and cultural event.”
The AfroGames were created by South African resident, five-time Gay Games competitor, and Federation of Gay Games (FGG) nominee Hlengiwe Buthelezi.
“We’re using the games in uniting people for inclusivity and use them to break the stigma of homophobia because most African countries have not decriminalized homosexuality,” she told Gay Star News.
“So what we wanted to do was to spread education through the sports and the arts.”
Buthelezi also noted the challenges of starting up this competition. She’s found many hurdles with marketing the event in other countries where homosexuality is illegal. That said, she was able to scrape everything together for this weekend, and she deserves great respect for doing so.
Congratulations to Hlengiwe Buthelezi, South Africa, and all of Africa. And good luck with the Games!
h/t: Berea Mail, Gay Star News