Join us on Saturday 30 January at 7pm at St Alphege’s Church,
Alan Paton Road, Scottsville to stand with survivors, advocates and allies to speak out against hate crimes affecting the LGBTI community. For further information call 033 342 6165 or visit www.gaylesbian.org.za
The Rainbow Theater Group is looking for performers between the ages of 18-30 to audition with the following:
A 2 minutes monologue from a published play.
A song or poem of your choice.
Date: 29 January 2016
Venue: Bessie Head Library: Auditorium 2, Pietermaritzburg
Note: Please bring comfortable clothes for movement class
The Gay & Lesbian Network’s Pink Mynah Festival street parade was held on Saturday and saw dozens of LGBTI people and supporters march down Chief Albert Lutuli Street with pride. Flags were held high and songs rang out onto the streets. The parade was aimed at raising awareness and is Pietermaritzburg’s only festival to celebrate sexual diversity. The parade was led by drum majorettes from Fezokulhe School, and the winners of the pageant held the night before.
We marched to Alexandra Park, where all were welcomed to the Pink Mynah picnic with live entertainment. This included the drum majorettes who performed a spectacular piece at the picnic, singing, dancing, stalls, as well as HIV testing and counselling. All in all, the Gay & Lesbian Network’s Pink Mynah Pageant 2015 was a huge success and GLN would like to thank all of our sponsors who made Pink Mynah possible, and to all of those who ‘came out’ to show their support.
The Gay & Lesbian Network’s Pink Mynah Festival included the Pink Mynah Pageant at the Protea Hotel Imperial on Friday night. The evening included great entertainment, a fashion show and of course, the pageant. The masters of ceremonies was the Gay & Lesbian Network’s very own Pierre Buckley, who won Mr PMB 2013 and Mr Gay South Africa Mr congeniality 2014. The other MC was Lucky Mthembu, who was crowned first princess for Miss Teen SA in 2009, was in the top 24 of Miss South Africa 2012, and is currently the face of Garnier. She has also modeled for well-known stores, including Mr Price, The Hub, Jet and Jam Stores, to name a few. She has featured in True Love, Destiny, Sawubona and Real Magazine, as well as many newspapers, billboards, TV and other print media.
There were two categories, Mr Pink Mynah and Ms Pink Mynah, and contestants were welcomed to enter either category regardless of gender or sexual orientation- just one of the factors that make our pageant very unique. The pageant was judged by Siya Khumalo, Shireen Anthony, Linda Ngcobo and Elre du Plessis. There was a talent section, casual wear and evening wear and the contestants all looked stunning as they strutted their stuff along the run way. They also each had to answer questions about themselves, and these influences their scores.
The room was filled with excitement as we waited for the winners to be announced. And the winner of the Mr Pink Mynah is Abongile Matyila, and the Ms Pink Mynah winner is Philisiwe Ntuli. The runner ups for Mr Pink Mynah are Mhlengi Shezi and Nhlakanipho Mkhulisa; and the runners up for Ms Pink Mynah are Thanduxolo Thengwa and Veronica Banks (Veron Moodley). The winner of the pageant will get involved in community projects and serve as ambassadors for the Gay & Lesbian Network in the coming year.
The Gay & Lesbian Network’s Pink Mynah Festival started with an Arts & Film Festival which was held at the KZN Museum on 3rd December 2015. The event was a huge success, with over 70 people in attendance. One of the main highlights was the screening of the much celebrated film, While you weren’t looking. The audience thoroughly enjoyed this film and there was a discussion of it after the screening. Some of the comments included things like “This film portrays the power the love and what it can do to you” and “it’s really great to see a film like this- one that shows what it’s like for the South African queer community.”
Other highlights of the day included the Rainbow Theatre Group, the Gay & Lesbian’s Network very own drama group. They performed a contemporary dance piece entitled “my body, my life, my decisions” which aims at raising awareness on the high prevalence of hate crimes committed against the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersexed (LGBTI) community throughout Africa. There was also an art exhibition which focused on the prevalence of hate crimes, an HIV/AIDS exhibition, poetry and singing. A great time was had by all and there was only positive feedback on the day’s events.
The Gay & Lesbian Network (GLN) was at Soweto Pride 2015 showing our support. The march took place in Meadowlands and the main focus was to stop hate crimes against LGBTI persons, especially in the townships where it has mostly been women victims who have been raped and murdered. This year’s theme was “Our Lives Matter – Safety, Justice and Freedom are our Rights.” A great time was had by all who attended!
The Gay & Lesbian Network recently had our external evaluation feedback. The aim of the evaluation is to see where the Network is and how the work that we do is making an impact. The feedback was given by Dr Claire Kerry, who conducted the evaluation. The event was held at the KZN Museum with discussions and tea had afterwards.
In celebration of Women’s Day, the ladies at the Gay and Lesbian Network (GLN) were treated to a buffet breakfast at the Golden Horse Casino. The event was hosted by the Pietermaritzburg Community Chest and there were many inspirational speakers. The speakers included Derryn Campbell, Priscilla Bhika, Sue Barnes and MC Ingrid Roberts. There was also a fashion show and many lucky draws, in which Tracy Sibisi and Ann Sthole won some lovely prizes. The day was also in celebration of the Community Chest’s 55 birthday and attendees were asked to make donation towards the Chest. The GLN ladies had a fabulous time at the breakfast and it was a real treat!
On August 6 2015, the participants of the Zenzele Project, had their graduation ceremony. The Zenzele Project is an off shoot of the Gay & Lesbian Network’s Outreach project, and is aimed at empowering youth in local communities.
The Zenzele Project is the first of its kind in the area and was implemented in February. The group of 42 participants were spilt into separate groups for training. The topics that were covered in the course included personal development, career development and financial literacy. The personal development was facilitated by Lindzi Robinowitz and Monique Van Deventer, while Simon Wilde and Mark Brassell covered financial literacy, and Anna Martin did career development with them.
Londeka Xulu is the programme co-ordinator and has been hoping to run such a project for years and is extremely happy about the Zenzele pilot being such a great success. Ndumiso Gwala is the outreach worker who was also an integral part of the project.