The Side by Side LGBT Film Festival has recently launched a fundraising campaign to further promote equal rights. Through the Resist to Exist initiative, individuals from around the world have the opportunity to help create change in a country where being LGBT is forbidden and dangerous. Side by Side has been one of the key actors in helping to bring around change and plays a pivotal role in breaking the silence on LGBT issues, stimulating dialogue and discussion within the public domain.
The last 24 months have witnessed an unprecedented onslaught against the LGBT movement in Russia. An orchestrated campaign headed by the government, religious leaders, state controlled and non-independent TV, radio, print and online media, regional and local politicians and various civil society actors including nationalists and parent groups, have actively coerced together in a rigorous attempt to curb the human rights and freedom of LGBT people in Russia. In spite of the deteriorating situation and the continued crackdown Side by Side disseminates accurate information on LGBT people within the public space, challenging stereotypes and obsolete notions currently being expounded by conservative elements within society.
Side by Side's director, Manny de Guerre, was honored at the 25th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles with the International Advocate for Change award for her work in promoting LGBT equality through the work of the film festival. Last year, GLAAD worked with Side by Side to bring Dustin Lance Black, Bruce Cohen, and Gus Van Sant to the festival to screen their film MILK.According to the Side by Side web site:
Side by Side remains committed to the human rights cause in Russia. We believe in a society in which all people are able to live freely according to their choices without fear of themselves and of those who are different; a society which, through all of its segments, improves human rights and accepts and respects diversities of human sexuality and gender identity. If you share the same vision as us join us in our cause. With your generous gift donation Side by Side will be able to keep fighting against the oppression of the LGBT minority in Russia.
Help LGBT Russians live the life they love and deserve. For further information how you can help please click here.