The Unity Project is holding a Pride Rally this Saturday morning on Fort Atkinson’s Main Street bridge.
The event is slated for 10 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday. It was selected to match closely with National Coming Out Day, which actually is the day before.
The Unity Project is a Fort Atkinson-based nonprofit organization that early on focused the majority of its efforts on welcoming the local Hispanic community, and this year has expanded its effort to the LGBTQ community.
The event fits with the organization’s mission statement, which is “to promote a sense of acceptance and belonging among all members of our community.”
Laura Alwin of the Unity Project said that all area residents are invited to participate in the rally, which aims to show support for people who are lesbians, gay, transgender or queer or who have a different gender identity.
People need not be members of the LGBTQ community to participate in support of the equality and dignity of every human.
“Regardless of one’s religious upbringing or beliefs, we can all agree to stand against hate,” Alwin said.
“Come support your family, friends and community,” she added.
This marks the first time for such an event in Fort Atkinson, but National Coming Out Day itself has been in existence for more than 30 years. The event was founded in 1988 to promote civil rights and acceptance for the LGBTQ community, with the aim of creating an environment where “living openly and honestly is possible.”
The date was set to mark the anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights.
Alwin said that the Unity Project hopes that community members will show their support for LGBTQ people living in the local area by flying a rainbow flag the week of National Coming Out Day and/or by meeting Unity Project members on the bridge Saturday.