The Pride Parade is a day we at CSHC look forward to every year. We love the sense of community, the music, the atmosphere. We love making our float and handing out Love Kits to the crowd. We love the drag queens and the rainbow flags and the costumes and the creative floats. Who doesn’t love a really great parade, right?

But we don’t just participate for the good time. To us, Pride weekend is an important and meaningful event in our community. It’s about supporting the LGBT community, celebrating how far we’ve come, and remembering the work that still has to be done.

Why do we participate in Pride? For those who don’t know, Calgary Sexual Health Centre has a long history of working with the LGBT community:

  • In the early 90s, we started a Questioning Your Sexual Orientation program for women.
  • In 1997, we started including anti-homophobia work in our high school sex ed program. The program has evolved and our educators continue to help students make their school a safe place for LGBT people.
  • From our work in schools, we realized that GSAs (Gay Straight Alliances) in schools needed support, so in 2012 we created the Calgary Gay Straight Alliance Network. Monthly meetings connect students, teachers and administrators, and help build and maintain successful GSAs in schools.
  • For the past two years we have organized Camp fYrefly in Calgary.
  • Our Training Centre trains professionals such as teachers, social workers and nurses about sexual health, including how to create a safe space for LGBT clients and staff.
  • Since 2012, we have partnered with the Alex Youth Health Centre in an initiative called Enhancing Supports to support vulnerable LGBT youth.
  • In 2014, we will build an HIV prevention program, targeting young gay men.
  • We partner with and sit on many LGBT committees, including Safety Under the Rainbow and the Calgary Police Service Sexual & Gender Diversity Chief’s Advisory Board.

We believe in providing programs that are sensitive and inclusive of sexual and gender minorities, and that’s reflected in all of our work. Participating in Pride is a continuation of our values as an organization.

“Pride is about human rights. Each year we walk to celebrate Calgary Pride. We also walk in solidarity with the LGBT citizens throughout the world who are not safe to be open, never mind celebrate their sexual orientation and gender diversity. We have come a long way, but there is a long road still to go for true equality for LGBT people,” says Pam Krause, President and CEO of the Calgary Sexual Health Centre.

Pride is open to everyone. Come down and watch the parade on August 31 or participate in any of the other great Pride activities this week. We’re especially excited to announce that Jon Cornish will be walking with us in the parade this year – look for him on our amazing green and orange float with the bubbles!

For more information on the parade and other Pride events, go to For more about our LGBT programs and workshops, go to