PRIDE CYMRU is a volunteer-led charity that works to promote the elimination of discrimination be it on the grounds of sexual orientation, gender, race, religion or ability.
We are committed to campaigning for equality and acceptance of diversity within our communities. We recognise and celebrate the contributions made by LGBT+ people in society and we continue our work to create opportunities for LGBT+ people around Wales to connect and support each other.
Pride Cymru is committed to promoting and raising awareness of the issues affecting the LGBT+ community as we want our society to be free from hate crime, discrimination and prejudice.
Despite some progress in legislation, the fight for equality and inclusion for the LGBT+ community is far from over. Parts of our community are still suffering. For example, transgender people still struggle to access healthcare in fear of stigma; there is an increase in hate crime targeting those most vulnerable in our community; mental health problems are on the rise and gender-inclusive language continues to be overlooked across the workplace and in society.
As well as our annual Pride event which looks to connect the LGBT+ community physically, we work throughout the year to increase engagement between different parts of the LGBT+ community so that we can support each other and grow as a united and empowered part of society.
We are proud to be able to work with organisations such as Glitter Cymru, Bi Cymru, Victim Support and the Deaf Hub Wales in a way that can benefit all parts of the LGBT+ community.
How It All Began
Pride Cymru is here to raise awareness of the barriers LGBT+ people face and wants to celebrate people’s individuality. However, the origins of Pride Cymru’s Big Weekend are far from rosy. In 1999, South Wales Police noted a surge in hate crimes towards the LGBT+ community and decided to work closely with them in the hope of creating a safer Cardiff. As a result, the first ever Cardiff Mardi Gras – now known as Pride Cymru’s Big Weekend – was held on 4 September 1999 in conjunction with a national police conference.
What started as a group of people organising a one-day pride event is now, 20 years on, Pride Cymru – one of Wales’ leading LGBT+ charities.
Pride Cymru’s Big Weekend has become a family-friendly community event, enabling diverse groups to come together and find out more about one another and the matters that affect the LGBT+ community. We work to support all areas within the LGBT+ community throughout Wales and by engaging and partnering with other organisations, we strive towards acceptance and respect for all.
FIVE Facts About Pride Cymru
In 2003, Amnesty International used the event to draw attention to the many countries around the world that forbids same sex relationships.
In 2006, Cardiff Mardi Gras hosted the world’s first gay motor show, called ‘TopGayer’ which revealed a secret shopper survey on the treatment of LGBT customers by over 150 UK car dealers.
Cardiff Mardi Gras grew even bigger in 2012, when it held its first parade through Cardiff city centre, expanding the carnival entertainment from Coopers Field onto the high street.
The festival that used to cost £50,000 back in 2002 has tripled over the years costing near £200,000 to organise. To cut venue hire costs and make the event possible in 2013, under a community initiative the event had to take place in the Millennium Stadium. A considerable amount of funds needs to be raised throughout the year.
Pride Cymru became the first Pride event in the UK to be accredited with a Silver Award by ‘Attitude is Everything’ in 2015 in terms of improving accessibility for deaf and disabled attendee’s and has now achieved Gold Award making it only the second Pride in the UK to have that standard.