Loud and Proud: Durban Pride 2019
Sanelisiwe A. Mabaso
Durban Pride inspired people of all ages and genders to embrace their sexuality at the 9th annual Durban Pride.
The event drew in about a thousand marchers this year with the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex (LGBTI+) community taking to the streets to commemorate 50 years since the Stonewall Riots. As the Pride has experienced steady growth, so has the protest parade, which kicked off at the Gugu Dlamini Park (Workshop).
Organiser of the event, Nonhlanhla Mkhize, from the Durban LGBTI+ Community Centre in Durban explained that the event celebrated the LGBTI+ community and the variety of free interactive entertainment was planned to help LGBTI+ people in the community find pride in things that make them unique and to develop a deeper knowledge of their sexuality.
“The Pride turnout was great. It was for the community, there were more people, more than what we expected and we are happy. It went very well,” said Mkhize.
One of the attendees, Thandekile Ndlovu said, “Pride is usually when people celebrate who they are and being comfortable because usually people come from different backgrounds where they don’t have the freedom to express themselves. But when at Pride you feel safe,” she said.
The fascinating activities continued throughout the day and a wide variety of entertainment reflecting and celebrating sexual diversity was present.
Elinma Belvins, who identifies as gay said she felt at home and was happy to be around people like her, “It’s so nice to be with other people who are just like us. I feel like I fit in so well and I can just be myself,” she said.
The event was a vibrant affair featuring drag artists, sexual education, modelling shows and many other exciting activities.