British Muslims are launching their first ever Pride festival.
LGBTQ charity Imaan will celebrate its 20th anniversary of supporting lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer Muslims by hosting a festival in London next year to celebrate what it means to be both queer and Muslim.
As well as continuing their mission to help people reconcile their sexuality and gender identity with their Islamic faith, the charity hope Imaan Fest will “bring some joy into the world” – which is especially important for those who face discrimination and prejudice.
“Often LGBTQI Muslims are caught in the middle of islamophobia and homophobia,” Imaan told The Independent.
“We want to provide a safe and inclusive space where people feel like they do not have to choose between identities and that they can be LGBTQI and Muslim without pressure from those who say otherwise.
“Our festival will provide a space for LGBTQI Muslims from across the UK to be empowered, engaged and to make no apologies for being practising Muslims and LGBTQI People.”
They added: “No one can have a padlock on Islam in the UK. We are Muslims that so happen to be LGBTQI.”
To help make the festival a success, Imaan have launched a Crowdfunder page and are encouraging their wider friends and communities to help raise funds. So far, they’ve raised over £7,000 with a goal of £10,000.
The festival will feature panels, discussions, speakers, arts, culture and history.