KAYZA ROSE (CEN­TRE) ) The very first UK Black Pride…

Diva (UK) - - Feature | This Is Your Pride -

I was around 24 or 25 at the time and there had never been n any­thing like it to myy knowl­edge. A Pride for or peo­ple of colour!? I re­mem­ber be­ing ex­cited and shocked at the same time and think­ing, “What amaz­ing per­son has man­aged to pull this off? Its’ go­ing to be a place where eat­ing things like jollof rice and jerk chicken isn’t seen as ex­otic, its’ con­sid­ered ‘home-cooked food.’” My part­ner at the time and a few friends agreed that we were go­ing! I re­mem­ber won­der­ing how we’d man­age to have a great time and feel safe with it be­ing lo­cated in Southend. We took coaches, which left from Vaux­hall and set off on a jour­ney to an event that would make his­tory. We ar­rived feel­ing ready to ex­pe­ri­ence all UK Black Pride had to of­fer. I felt emo­tional all of a sud­den as we set up our blan­kets on the grass. We had mu­sic, en­ter­tain­ment and food. Noth­ing felt out of place and we felt safe to be our­selves; this was awe­some. Black Pride was every­thing I had wanted and so much more than I ex­pected. We danced, we laughed, we ate and we were able to just BE! We knew then that it was pos­si­ble to claim space just for us and that if it hap­pened once, it could hap­pen again! Im’ now 36 years old and have the ab­so­lute hon­our to be head of me­dia pro­duc­tion at UK Black Pride. I recog­nise that we need a Black Pride and I’ll do all I can to en­sure the mes­sage spreads far and wide.

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