For the longest time, it looked as if this year's Skövde Pride would be cancelled. Fortunately, Hanna Forsling, a student at the University of Skövde, wanted that to change.
Sunday September 30 could have been any gray and gloomy autumn day. Instead, the day will feature a sparkling parade, full of all the colours of the rainbow. Thanks to Hanna's determination.
– We just have to have a pride parade. The struggle for equal rights and value is not over. That is why we are very pleased that so many people wanted to get involved for our cause, says Hanna Forsling, a student of cognitive neuroscience at the University of Skövde.
She simply could not accept the news about the parade being cancelled.
– Initially, I was disappointed and sad. Then I was angry. It all started with posting an update on Instagram and putting out feelers on Facebook. Many people felt the same and reached out to me. And from there, it just kept moving.
"We keep fighting"
The significance of a pride parade cannot be underestimated, says Hanna.
– Some people will always say it is a non-issue. And it should be. But there are still people who are opposed to the hbtq-movement. That is strange, being opposed to such a positive thing as love. Until those people reconsider, we must keep fighting.
Hanna is an experienced parade-visitor, but her new role as organizer and project manager is new to her. She says it is "a bit scary", but she is getting a lot of support from others.
– Skövde City Association have provided me with a lot of help, and they will arrange a shopping weekend featuring a Pride theme. Many volunteers have offered their support, as well. The most important thing is the fact that the parade takes place, and who is organizing it is secondary. Skövde Pride will return next year and that feels wonderful in every way.
Everyone is welcome
Sunday features the parade. The Student Union will gather the troops and proceed from Kampanilen on campus at 2 p.m. and go from there to Arena Skövde to meet up with the rest of the parade.
– Everyone who supports our message is welcome to join. The purpose of the parade is, of course, to epxress our support for hbtq-persons and everyone's right to be who they are, says Hanna and adds:
– I am very excited! I can't wait.