Learn six ways to celebrate Lesbian Visibility Day in college, from hosting events to educating yourself as an ally. Promote inclusivity, representation, and support.
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- Lesbian Visibility Day promotes lesbian visibility and representation at colleges and beyond.
- You can celebrate the occasion by hosting events, supporting lesbian-owned businesses, and more.
- Being a true ally for lesbians involves listening, taking action, and prioritizing their joy.
The goal of Lesbian Visibility Day is to recognize the contributions of lesbians to society while raising awareness about the issues they face. This is particularly important on university campuses, where lesbians and people of many different perspectives and identities interact. By celebrating this day, colleges can create a more inclusive environment and encourage students to embrace their own lesbian identity or celebrate those who are.
LGBTQ+ students are at a higher risk of mistreatment, bullying, and other experiences leading to negative effects on their mental health compared to their heterosexual and cisgender counterparts. Therefore, promoting visibility and representation for any and all identities under the LGBTQ+ umbrella is a crucial part of creating safer and more welcoming spaces for lesbians (and the wider LGBTQ+ community) on campus.
What Is Lesbian Visibility Day?
Lesbian Visibility Day is observed on April 26 each year and aims to increase visibility, representation, and support for the lesbian community. This intentionally includes nonbinary people and transgender women, as both may identify as lesbians as well. It’s also vital to take an intersectional approach and lift the voices of BIPOC and POC lesbians.
The consensus is that the holiday originated in 2008 when the first celebration happened in the U.S. The day has since gone global, with events that celebrate lesbian culture as equally important to gay culture, the culture of the broader LGBTQ+ community, and culture at large.
There are many ways to observe the occasion, too, which are as diverse and nuanced as the lesbian community.
How to Celebrate and Bring Awareness to Lesbian Visibility Day
While celebrating Lesbian Visibility Day can be as public or private as you see fit, you can help make the day count. This is something that everyone can lean into, whether you are a member of the LGBTQ+ community or if you identify as an ally. If you are not a lesbian, try to make sure your plans center the explicit needs and requests of lesbians. For example, take time to research whether lesbian groups are already planning events and lend your energy and resources to them rather than starting your own.
Attend or Host an Event on Campus or Virtually
Attending or hosting an event on campus or virtually can bring awareness to Lesbian Visibility Day. Events can include lesbian film screenings, queer karaoke, and coming out dances. You can also join your LGBTQ+ student club. Each of these activities fosters a sense of community and allows lesbians on campus to take up much-needed space.
Support Lesbian-Owned Businesses
Buying from lesbian-owned businesses on Lesbian Visibility Day strengthens the economic value, power, and impact of lesbian entrepreneurs. By seeking out these businesses, you put money directly into lesbian pockets, a surefire way to give impactful support. Some options include TomboyX clothing, Nostalgia coffee, Diaspora Co. spices, and Chef Joya, to name just a few.
Educate Yourself As an Ally
In order to become a true ally of the lesbian community, you need to educate yourself. Influential activists and authors to study include Marsha P. Johnson, Audre Lorde, Jeanne Córdova, and Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon. You can also watch films like “Before Stonewall” and “The Watermelon Woman.” A familiarity with lesbian pop culture is also helpful.
Share Your Story and Show Your Pride
Are you a lesbian? If so, Lesbian Visibility Day is your time to shine. Perhaps you want to share your coming out story (if you have one) with like-minded folks, or simply be in a room with other people who support you. Work with your college’s LGBTQ+ club to put together a story-sharing circle encouraging active listening.
Organize a Fundraiser
College campuses can raise funds for lesbian-run and lesbian-supporting organizations by reaching out and requesting permission to partner with them, possibly hosting events such as pride-themed bake sales, silent auctions, concerts featuring queer bands, or drag king talent shows, with proceeds going towards the chosen organization. Students can also create online fundraising pages and encourage the larger community to donate.
Put On a Safer Sex Demonstration
While information about sexual health is available at most student health centers, putting on a queer-led safer sex demonstration on Lesbian Visibility Day allows voices other than those of heterosexual and cisgender folks to be the loudest. Afterward, you can give out free condoms, dental dams, lorals, and other goodies that center and celebrate lesbian pleasure.
Why It’s Important to Be an Ally and Advocate
Being an ally for the lesbian community is not just about accepting lesbians — you have to listen and take action. That means educating yourself about issues important to lesbians, understanding that the lesbian experience is not monolithic, and using your voice to speak up for their interests. You also need to fight for legislation that protects lesbians from discrimination and oppose harmful policies.
In addition to activism, being an ally means prioritizing lesbian joy. So, find out what the needs are in your community and support them with your wallet, attention, and an open ear. This means you will be a helpful ally not just on Lesbian Visibility Day, but all year long.