In 2014, activists of the Russian LGBT Network organized more than 160 events all over the country

On September 5-7, a meeting of the Interregional Coordination Council (ICC) of the Russian LGBT Network took place in Moscow. Among other things, the results of the work in 2014 were summed up: in 2014, activists of the Russian LGBT Network organized 165 events devoted to the work with LGBT community and with the wider population to inform people about the problems of lesbians, gays and bisexual and transgender people in Russia.

ICC is new form of interregional cooperation, established in 2013 in order enhance the effectiveness of work in the regions; it consists of the elected members of the regional and collective members. This time 25 people took part in the work of the Council.

The results of the work in 2014 and future of the organization were among the topics discussed during the meeting. In 2014, the following actions were organized in various regions of Russia: 53 events to spread information about LGBT rights and problems, 144 events for the members of LGBT community, 33 street actions and 21 advocacy events; the lawyers of the Network worked with 12 cases in the courts. It turned out that Tyumen LGBT organization “Raduzhny Dom”, Murmansk regional organization “Maximum” and Sverdlovsk and Voronezh regional branches of Russian LGBT Network were the most active in 2014.

The achievements of the regional branches and collective members are truly inspiring. For example, in Tyumen there is a weekly support group for bisexuals. Samara’s activists managed to establish solid relationships with the regional Ombudsman – even the new Ombudsman of Samara oblast Olga Galtsova stated that she is ready to protect the rights of LGBT community. One of the regional branches managed to organize an event for children coming from the vulnerable social groups – children from homosexual families, from migrants families and children by single mothers took part in the event. It all shows that the Russian LGBT Network works successfully in spite of truly complex environment.

Engagement of new people in the work and the needs of LGBT community in the regions were also among the questions discussed at the meeting. It was highlighted that the Russian LGBT Network will further support the events of the regional branches, promote the cooperation between LGBT-activists and professional communities (such as psychologists and lawyers) and organize educational and recreational events for activists.

The chairperson of the Russian LGBT Network Igor Kochetkov stated: “This meeting was an inspiration for all of us. Despite of numerous difficulties, our activists have ideas and resources to make it fly. Right now many human rights activist are quite pessimistic, but the Network works on and ready to face the future with confidence”.