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16 April 2009

New Site for Gay Straight Alliances

Good news for all schoolchildren in the Netherlands because a so-called GSA is a club holebi’s and hetero’s who, together with the school, want to show that their togetherness and friendship is no problem at all. The site focuses on holebi’s and hetero's who want to dedicate their selves to make their school a safe and tolerant place for gay, lesbians and bisexuals.

At the website both young people and teachers can log in. Young people and teachers can find information on how they can create a GSA. Students who already have been presenting their GSA present their GSA on this site. They share their plans with other students so that everyone can use them. Thus, there will arise a movement of students, holebi and straight, who at different schools will make their school a safe place for everyone.

COC Netherlands guides and supports the GSA network. Students can come to COC Netherlands for advice and help with the creation of GSA's in the country. It is to facilitate hope and courage. Something that is sorely needed. will organize several days in the coming years where GSA's can come together and learn from each other to get more results.

March 2009

Nijmegian Nazima will participate in board of Villa Lila!

Fotographer: Dennis Weitering

Copyright :

”A great honor” says Nazima Shaikh-Sahebdin (34), Director of ShaikhMela Communications “that I may sit in the board of Villa Lila.  ‘High Profile’ for me as a manager with room for my creative non-conformist side. Together we will fight visible for ‘the good case’”. “She was elected unanimously by the Board of Villa Lila. Not only because of the strength of us as directors, but especially because of her background and her experience, allowing her to bring an additional perspective and a wealth of knowledge and skills involved” says Niels Spierings (25) Secretary of the Board. Villa Lila is foundation of control of the Gay House in Nijmegen located at the In de Betouwstraat. Both parties think of each other as more valuable and in this way they can reinforce each other. The Villa is a safe haven for sexual diversity. It is also a breeding ground, a meeting place for people with various backgrounds. Religious diversity and ethnic diversity and the encounter between cultures is of great importance.

Spierings was a guest in the former radio program of Nijmegen1, Nazimasworld, in which he told about the International Day against homophobia. About gay-emancipation, Islam and the media. “A growing percentage of the newspaper articles about gays makes a connection with Muslims. The problem laid by ‘the Muslims’. ‘Islam’ is seen as a block in which there is no diversity, and gays are used as a stick to beat up the Muslims. Nazima and Niels, shared the conclusion that the answer on this is the cooperation of many parties, including Villa Lila and ShaikhMela Communications!

Shaikh-Sahebdin has a Surinamese-Hindustan mother and Pakistani father. She was born in Amsterdam and is an active Nijmegian. “This is my home country and the city of Nijmegen is my hometown. The feeling when you drive over the Waalbridge into Nijmegen each Nijmegian recognizes, it is so wonderful to be back home in our city.” She is director of a cultural and social enterprise. An information and communication diversity brokerage. Shaikh is her maiden name and Mela (read Méla) is ‘meeting’ in the Hindi-Urdu. The company vision is: ‘From practice to policy’. By that I mean that we make policy with, through and for people. 

With ShaikhMela Communications I want to inform correctly and communicate as a sharp professional with specialist expertise. Nazima is women, hetero, mother of 2 girls, married and Muslim. She feels connected to the 'gay scene'. “By making contact and friendships I have gained new friends and acquaintances. As a social entrepreneur, I am a bit worried about the gays that live in a we-culture in our little country.

I believe there is no proper care for the men and women who have inherited so naturally from their culture and religion that being gay, lesbian are bisexual is not allowed and not possible. That is probably an important cause of severe identity crisis in which people can come. Therefore it is important to appoint and reflect at the experience and emotion in this.”

Februari 2009

Lantern prize

Nijmegen nominated again.
The expertise centre ‘Movisie’ keeps track of the developments in the field of municipal emancipation policy by means of a so called ‘monitor’ .
At the 3rd of March the third monitor will be presented and then Movisie will also announce which municipality has won the Lantern prize.
Nijmegen is nominated for the third consecutive time. It received the Lantern prize as this was presented for the first time. Rotterdam received the previous one.
This year other nominees are: The Hague and Utrecht.
The Hague can be proud of a range of very well diversity projects, Utrecht offers much original cultural projects in spite of all kinds of troubles.
This year the jury is chaired by Arno Brok, the mayor of Sneek.
The jury will also hand over an encouraging prize this year to a smaller municipality: the Golden Flashlight. Dordrecht is mentioned.

Februari 2009

Dale Price for A Salaam

At Friday, February 6th , the annual Dales Lecture was pronounced by FNV president Agnes Jongerius. She discussed the achievements of the working class and the women's movement. The emancipation of immigrants is improving also but she warned against the consequences of the economic crisis: she outlined the emancipation as "a fragile process”. After the lecture the Dales prize was awarded to the Moroccan youth organisation A Salaam. During an interview by Clem Bongers, former president of the COC Nijmegen, the youngsters of A Salaam stated to be happy with the price and experience it both as a recognition and encouragement. More information

St. Beheer Homohuis Nijm.
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