Since the Pride Parades all over the world are paused due to the pandemic, people aren’t able to support Pride month as they were hoping to. Instead, we’ll have to get creative about how we can contribute to the LGBTQ community without repping in the streets.
Fortunately, there are plenty of covid-friendly activities you can do instead, as well as supporting LGBTQ owned brands and charities that lift up the movement. Do your part today with these unique ways to celebrate Pride month.
1. Join a live broadcast event
Since pride can’t take place in person this year, plenty of people are replacing it with socially distanced events that can be broadcast from anywhere. For instance, Mills James is partnering with NBC4 and Stonewall Columbus to stream the celebration, which will take place on June 19.
2. Take part in a fundraiser for charity
If you want to be a better ally, contribute to advocacy organizations and charities. Although in-person events will be canceled, there’s a heightened focus on organizations like Pride Gives Back, which gives grants of up to $3500 to LGBTQ focused organizations.
3. Celebrate virtually
SF and NY pride events might not be going down as usual, but SF Pride will happen during June. There are also plenty of online drag shows, and events on Facebook Live and Instagram Live so you can party at home and catch a DJ set if you’d like. Or, go big and throw a Zoom party!
4. Socially distanced gatherings
With more vaccines being available, a combination of drive-by parties, small gatherings, and outdoor events can be a form of celebrating. If people are cautious, they can spend time in person this way.
5. Show support in your yard or balcony
Don’t be afraid to adorn your yard or balcony with pro-Pride signs. You can fly pre-bought flags and banners to get into the spirit, or have the whole family complete these signs together.
6. Donate, Donate, Donate
If a fundraiser isn’t in the cards for you, consider supporting Pride organizations by donating to them. For example, the IGLTA Foundation subsidizes memberships for pride organizations in regions that don’t have support from the government or an existing LGBTQ infrastructure. No matter what organization you choose to donate to, every dollar counts.
7. Reach out to your local LGBTQ members
Whether it’s family, friends, or youth in your area that you could have an influence on, consider reaching out to youth and teens to make sure they’re ok, and navigating their sexual and gender identity without shame. You can act as a safe space by being an ally that listens. For Pride, try to consciously speak out against discrimination if you witness any, and start important conversations with loved ones that might not be as understanding or accepting of LGBTQ issues.
8. Ask people what their pronouns are
Never assume — the way that you perceive someone might not necessarily be the way that they perceive themselves. Stop acting like cisgender is the norm and act like an ally by offering your own pronouns. Pronouns are he/him/his, she/her/hers, and they/them/theirs. Make it a point to ask someone their preferred pronouns when meeting them — this is a big sign of respect and allyship. Being misgendered is never fun, and always warrants an apology.
9. Support LBGTQ businesses and companies
During this month, you can take a stand by buying from local LGBTQ businesses such as restaurants, bookstores, and cafes. You can also buy from brands who are doing Pride-themed collections — especially if they donate to causes. Or charities. Do your research when it comes to where you’re spending money. Take it a step further and if you support any pre-existing companies or organizations that are anti-LGBTQ.
10. Buy from less heteronormative authors and artists
Art is very empowering from the queer community and adjacent communities — the same goes for writers. Invest in LGBTQ literature and art — there are thousands of talented options to choose from. Discovering great art is a new way to rejuvenate and enact self care during the pandemic.
11. Rep with merchandise
You can always buy shirts or accessories that donate to LBGTQ organizations and demonstrate your support without you needing to say a word. Since many of our smiles are hidden behind masks, displaying your love and kindness this way is always appreciated.
12. Fight for protections and policies of LGBTQ people
In a post-Trump era, there have been more attacks on these communities than ever before. Get to know legislation and policies, and be prepared to fight back against them. Call or email your local reps, and don’t be afraid to attend a protest or march — many responsibly distanced ones are still happening.