The Belgian Pride vzw/asbl regularly receives questions about its policy choices. In order to provide an answer to these questions, we have gathered the most frequently asked questions and provided you with answers below in this overview. We will regularly update this overview.
We hope you enjoy reading it!
The Belgian Pride vzw/asbl
What is The Belgian Pride asbl?
The Belgian Pride asbl/vzw was founded in 1995 and was originally known as “Belgian Lesbian and Gay Pride Roze Zaterdag Samedi Rose”. This name was later abbreviated to The Belgian Pride, under which it is still trying to achieve its goal.
The first Brussels edition of the Pride attracted about 2,000 visitors to our capital. In 2014, 19 years after the first launch of the Belgian Pride, the event attracted 100.000 visitors to Brussels. The association’s headquarters have been located in Brussels since day one, where the Pride event has been held since 1996.
Read the complete story on our History page.
The most important social objective of the association is the annual organisation of the Belgian Pride, a national event organised in the Brussels-Capital Region.
The board of directors is composed of three regional LGBTI+ umbrella organisations, which define the theme and political requirements of the year. They represent a large number of local and regional associations. These three umbrella organisations are: RainbowHouse Brussels (Brussels), Arc-en-Ciel Wallonie (Wallonia) and Çavaria (Flanders). Each umbrella organisation delegates 4 members to the board of directors, each with one vote (4 votes per umbrella organisation). In addition, other associations and organisations are invited at all times. Permanently invited organisations: Rainbow Village Federation (ex-Syndigay) (Brussels LGBTI+ HORECA Union), visit.brussels and the Flemish Community Commission (VGC)
What are the mission and vision of the The Belgian Pride asbl/vzw?
You can find the mission and the full vision of the association on our About Us page
How are political and policy decisions taken within the organisation?
The Board of Directors (OA-BO) of the association approves the association's policy. The board meets once a month. Each Belgian regional LGBTI+ umbrella organisation delegates 4 members to the board of directors, each with one vote (4 votes per umbrella organisation). Decisions are usually made by consensus. Voting is held during the boards of directors.
Policy choices are always made according to our mission and vision. Our mission and vision constitute their basis and are the instruments to evaluate such a choice. We do not record projects and actions that do not fit within the framework of our mission and vision.
Our mission and vision are available here on our About Us page.
Which Pride Parade do we want?
Arc-en-Ciel Wallonie, the RainbowHouse Brussels and çavaria, which together constitute The Belgian Pride absl/vzw, want the Pride Parade to be a event in which everyone can carry their messages and claims. Diversity of opinion is an asset. We disapprove of violence, intimidation and vandalism initiated by anyone (police, governing bodies, participating groups or individuals).
How do we determine who can participate at the Belgian Pride events?
As a platform, the Belgian Pride wants to give as many organisations and individuals as possible a place in Pride. It is not only The Belgian Pride asbl/vzw that "organises the Pride", it is also all the associations and individuals who participate and implement initiatives during the Pride period that “make the Pride”.
As an organisation, we think it is important for everyone to be able to participate in the Pride. Because the places in the Pride Parade and the Pride Village are limited, we make a distinction between the different objectives of the participating organisations, giving priority to organisations that focus on LGBTI+ issues.
Each participating organisation and group in the Pride Parade and the Pride Village must accept the mission and vision of our organisation, properly follow the registration procedure, and respect and sign the charter. As soon as all those conditions are fulfilled, an organisation can participate. For companies and political parties, certain additional and specific conditions apply.
Why do political parties participate in the Pride Parade?
The Belgian Pride asbl/vzw considers political parties as partners to improve the rights and well-being of the LGBTI+ community. After all, it is the politicians who can make political and legislative changes. That is why we consider it is important that all those who work for an inclusive society have visibility for their own message.
Participating in the Pride Parade of the Belgian Pride is not easy. A political party must prove to have been an ally in the past and promise to continue to do so in the future.
To participate as a political party in the Belgian Pride, the party must follow the same procedure as the other participants (for example, respect and sign the annual charter) and answer these four additional questions.
- What has your party done for the LGBTI+ community in the past?
What are your party's next steps for the LGBTI+ community this year, specifically regarding the annual theme?
Who is your party's contact person for LGBTI+ themes, who interested parties can contact if they have questions?
In your opinion, how did you respect the charter and the questions related to last year’s participation throughout the past year?
The answers to the questions are published on our website so that everyone can read what the political party has achieved and what its futures projects are. In addition, a contact person is also requested. If you have questions, you can always contact that person.
Why do companies participate in the Pride Parade?
In the business world and at work, we also think it is important that everyone can be themselves. In our view, companies must reflect society: diverse and inclusive. Many small and large companies are already working on diversity and inclusion, also in the LGBTI+ field. Companies that have inclusive actions on the content and that focus on LGBTI+ issues can participate in the activities of the Belgian Pride. Their participation in the Pride march cannot be purely commercial. Their work for inclusion and diversity must be the message.
We also request these companies to financially and logistically support the Pride. In this way, we increase our own income that we use to give LGBTI+ associations (and the Pride in general) the necessary visibility.
In the Pride Village, we allow some enterprises to “give a taste” of their products. On the one hand, it allows visitors to have fun and, on the other hand, we use the financial proceeds of these partnerships to make the Pride Village accessible for free.
We watch the participating enterprises with regards to their LGBTI+ activities within the company and remain vigilant on pinkwashing and rainbow-washing.
How is the (social/political) theme of the Belgian Pride determined?
The three regional LGBTI+ organisations of Belgium (also called umbrella organisations, which are RainbowHouse Brussels (Bruxelles), Arc-en-Ciel Wallonie (Wallonia) and Çavaria (Flanders)) determine the content of the Belgian Pride theme. These organisations use the Belgian Pride as a megaphone for their claims. The Belgian Pride asbl ensures that this theme is widely communicated (mainly to visitors of the Pride, and not necessarily to the politicians) and develop a campaign around it. It is the regional LGBTI+ organisations that are responsible for working with civil society at large, the political world, etc., as well as for the follow up of any request. In this way, we believe we will create an impact, not only at the political level and at the decision-making level, but also with as many people as possible.
What is the annual charter of the Belgian Pride?
The annual charter of the Belgian Pride is a document that participants in the Pride Parade and the Pride Village must respect and sign. Among other things, the charter demands an active commitment to improving the well-being of the LGBTI+ community, to respecting the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and to rejecting any kind of discrimination.
Participating organisations are not the only ones that may sign the charter. Individuals and organisations that do not participate may also get involved by signing the charter.
A list of signatories is published each year on our website.
See The Pride Charter page.
What is unacceptable behavior?
Everyone is welcome on the Belgian Pride, regardless of gender identities, sexual orientation, origin and cultural and religious identities, (dis)abilities or age.
We reject every form of physical or verbal violence and disrespectful behaviour!
How is the Pride financed?
The Belgian Pride asbl/vzw has about 300,000 euros in expenses and income. Regarding income (figures for 2018), 71% of these resources come from government subsidies, 25% from own resources (participation fees, partnerships, revenue sales and donations) and 4% from other sources of income. In regards to expenses, about 57% are used for the practical organisational logistics of the activities, 35% for personnel costs and 8% for organisation-specific costs (offices, sustainable investments, insurances, etc.).
In addition, the Belgian Pride can count on a large number of partners who also provide indirect funding. The City of Brussels and the Brussels-Capital Region contribute to logistics and communication, visit.brussels helps with logistics organisation. We have many partnerships with the media (exchange agreements) and the police is responsible for the security of many activities.
The LGBTI+ umbrella organisations also work to achieve Pride, in terms of content. The related costs are their responsibility.
Can The Belgian Pride asbl/vzw finance my project or my participation?
No. The Belgian Pride absl/vzw wants to be a platform and offer a space for organisations to participate, for example, in the Pride Parade and to hold a stand in the Pride Village. In order to give small organisations the opportunity to participate, organisations that focus on LGBTI+ enterprises can participate for free. The actual cost price (cost for our organisation) is much higher. Via subsidies and our own resources, we compensate the actual costs depending on the organisation, for example, of the Pride Parade and the Pride Village. In other words, it is thanks to this financing model that small LGBTI+ organisations can also participate and benefit of visibility. In this way, we indirectly support every project and organisation involved.
See also the question above "How is the Pride financed?".
Can I help The Belgian Pride ?
Absolutely! You can support the organisation by volunteering, promoting activities and our annual theme, participating in activities and events or making a financial contribution. You find information on how you can help on our Get Involved page.
Can The Belgian Pride asbl/vzw answer individual questions?
We try to make as much information as possible available to you and answer your questions. If you have a question about the content (for example on the social theme), please contact one of our regional LGBTI+ organisations. If you have organisational questions, you can contact us.