Shanghai_Pride_logoChina: ShanghaiPRIDE, will besides its annual parties, organize activities ranging from debates promoting equal rights, LGBT community building, a film and theater festival and a drive to collect money for HIV-related charities.

ShanghaiPRIDE will be celebrating its sixth anniversary this year with festivities organized under the theme “Better Together.”

The theme reflects the aspirations of the Shanghai-based LGBT community to strengthen its position in terms of equal rights, acceptance, self-affirmation, and community-building within both the local and the global contexts, organizers say.

A series of social, cultural and educational events will be held before festivities culminate during the Pride Week June 13-22.

ShanghaiPRIDE is mostly noted for its parades, pool parties and fun activities.

However, this year there will be a strong emphasis on awareness about specific issues surrounding the LGBT community such as marriage equality, sexual health, and workplace diversity and acceptance that will be raised in debates ShanghaiPRIDE is scheduled to hold.

It aims to reach out to a wider public and policy makers by talks in panel discussions planned June 15 and 21 with themes of religious and family acceptance. Workshops for NGO are planned for June 22 around the issues of coming out, social challenges and opportunities for changing stigma and pride about LGBT identity.

ShanghaiPRIDE 2014 Film Festival will be held June 15-20 seeking to establish a public platform for discourses on local LGBT social issues and raise public awareness and support for local LGBT communities. Also included will be interactive discussions and a Chinese LGBT-themed short film competition.

A theater festival will also be held around the theme of identity. A Chinese play by This Love Drama Club, will be staged on June 15, 20 and 22.

An Art Exhibition opening is scheduled for June 13.

As part of the traditional outdoor get-together and sports element of the festival, the Pride Run leading to the Pink Picnic is scheduled for June 14.

Organizers will invite consulates, corporations, and NGOs, many of whom have already confirmed their sponsors as part of donations that will go to an HIV-related charity.