This year on November 8-10, Pink Armenia has organized the 5th annual Rainbow Forum. This event gathered around 60 LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer) participants, as well as their parents, civil society representatives, artists, activists, lawyers and specialists from health and related areas.

The headline of the forum was “The past, present, and the future of the LGBT movement.” This forum reflected on the origin of the latter, including the existing projects, challenges, and progress. Also, the expectations and the plans of the community regarding the development and positive changes towards the movement were discussed.

Productive discussions of Rainbow Forum was based on mutual respect, trust, and support. The topics of discussions varied from the role of art in society to issues, such as the impact of the negative attitude of society towards the sexual orientation and gender identity on the lives of LGBTQ people and their relatives. During the forum, parents were provided a platform to share their stories and highlight the importance of mutual respect in their relationships with their children.

During the forum, some participants introduced to their organizations and initiatives shared their ideas and made suggestions towards the betterment of the movement. Our colleagues presented the scientific study of the social-historical levels of Armenian culture. Additionally, our partners from Eastern European Coalition for LGBT+ Equality talked about their experience from Ukraine, Georgia, and Russia.

During the forum, some current issues regarding the intolerance of society, manipulation, and exploitation of LGBTQ topics by the media and politicians for political dividends were discussed as well.

Some of the forum participants were willing to show up on the traditional group photo, and this once again reminded us about the noise that was raised after the first Rainbow Forum group photo publication in 2015.