As of 27th May we have joined the UK Pride Organisers Network (UKPON) as an affilate member in supporting PRIDEs accross the UK.
Who is UKPON?
UK Pride Organisers Network (UKPON) formed to bring Pride organisers together to share knowledge and experiences, to support each other, and to encourage a diverse and vibrant Pride movement around the UK.
They aim to:
- Promote and support Pride organisations in the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands and Isle of Man (hereafter referred to as ‘the UK’) and the Republic of Ireland;
- Organise at least one annual conference, and facilitate learning and networking opportunities for Members;
- Appoint and assist a pre-existing Pride to host “UK Pride” each year;
- Promote the initiatives of Members at a regional, national and international level:
- Encourage the UK Pride movement to promote equality, diversity and humanity within and beyond the United Kingdom & the Republic of Ireland
Read more on there webisite here
Why join UKPON?
By joining, we can work with PRIDE organisations directly and focus on breaking down barriers and gatekeeping of communities at PRIDE, especially those who belong in the Kink and Fetish community and Sex work community. From the leather community’s ( and others in the Kink and Fetish community) supported the LGBTQ+ during the AIDS crisis and have been at the forefront of Pride from its very beginning to the community’s dedication to queer and sexual liberation, there is a longstanding history of support and intersection between kinksters and queer people.
We emphasise that PRIDE has a lot of work to ensure they are inclusive of the Kink and Fetish community and POC, women, disabled, trans+ communities, sex work, HIV+, etc. Importantly, we must observe that such discrimination and gatekeeping also occurs within the Kink and Fetish community themselves.
To learn more about Kink and Fetish at PRIDE click here.
UKPON asked us some questions for their newsletter
In Bold are the questions posed by UKPON.
Tell us a bit about yourselves.
ANIMAGI CIC is a community interest company consisting of a team of 5 people. Based in Reading, we are focusing on improving education and awareness within the Kink and Fetish and wider LGBTQ+ communities, predominantly in the South East and where feasible LGBTQ+ communities nationally. Aiming to bring people together and encourage networking; educate and promote safe and consensual practices; and promote Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I). We do this by running 18+ social events, create and distribute educational resources (such as condoms, lube, sexual health information and safety around kink) and conducting social media awareness campaigns.
How did Animagi get started, and why?
We got started after a successful event in March 2020 before COVID-19, where we decided to implement an education corner that was well received by the community. We realised that there is a lot more work to support and educate our community, ensuring those are safe from harm. We were also contacted by PRIDE in Gloucestershire about attending their PRIDE in September and later realised a disconnect between PRIDEs and Kink and Fetish communities; therefore, we decided to incorporate it in May of that year.
You’ve been working with some Pride Organisations – tell us a little about those collaborations.
We have been working tirelessly over the last years and improving the connection between Kink and Fetish, PRIDE, sex work and sexual health awareness with initially creating a survey which was retweet and shared by UKPON in August 2020. Many of us know PRIDE was supported and started by many sex workers, with many leather people and other fetishists supporting, attending and running PRIDEs and other protests such as those during the AIDs crisis.
We worked with PRIDE in Gloucestershire to create an educational show to raise awareness of this and the importance for people why Kink and Fetish should and will always will be a part of PRIDE and at the start of this year, worked with MyUmbrella to educate people on Fetish for International Fetish Day on the 15th January (all the videos found here on their social media). As of recent working with Thames Valley Positive Support (TVPS) supporting in saying no to the Nordic Model of sex work (found here) which will affect huge numbers of community campaigned by DecrimNow and supported so many other organisations.
You are one of the newest Affiliate Members of UKPON…what support do you hope to provide to the Network?
UKPON is a great network where we can speak to PRIDEs directly to support them in talking about subjects that may be deemed non-heteronormative. Queer culture is vast, and we should express this and celebrate those who may enjoy Kink and Fetish and make them feel comfortable and safe to go to PRIDE and those who work as LGBTQ+ sex workers are protected supported. We also love to connect with local sexual health clinics and ensure that PRIDEs support people’s sexual health and ensure that those are enjoying consensual activities. With all this, we ensure to be inclusive of all the LGBTQIA+ community. Eventually, we would love these topics to be mute and be something that happens naturally.
What do you hope to get out of being members yourselves?
As members, we want to support PRIDEs in being the best they can be and support those who go to PRIDEs. We would also love to build more connections and build funding to reach as many PRIDEs as possible.
What are your current priorities as an organisation?
As covid restrictions realise, we aim to restart and build on our social events. In September, we can not wait to attend PRIDE in Gloucestershire, Reading PRIDE and other PRIDE if they wish to make an educational and social area for the Kink and Fetish community or even virtually. Something we have been working on over the last year