Earlier this year, #prideforeveryone was launched, a virtual reality parade about global pride where anyone, anywhere, could join and feel its strength.
Since Google he started distributing Google Cardboard all over the world, it has focused a part of its deliveries in centers, schools and institutes so that they can live the experience that could be felt being in a pride parade, with the collaboration of more than 20 groups and non-profit organizations around the world.
This is the story of Alba Reyes, founder of the Sergio Urrego Foundation, who brought the parade to the students in Bogotá, Colombia.
“In 2014, my son Sergio took his own life because he was suspended and discriminated against by his school for kissing another boy. Unfortunately, neither I nor his friends were able to prevent the harassment and isolation he felt.
Since then, I have made it my mission to make sure that what happened to Sergio, does not happen to any other young person in my country.
I started the Sergio Urrego Foundation by traveling to schools all over Colombia and conducting inclusion workshops with students. Although LGBTQ children may be more likely to feel isolated, many young people do not feel accepted by their families, friends, or teachers. My workshops aim to create activities and safe spaces that help students understand what it feels like to be discriminated against, reinforcing the importance of diversity and inclusion.
An important part of these workshops is to help students put themselves in someone else’s shoes. This summer, we have used Google Cardboard to experience it on a higher level. Most of these students have never seen an LGBTQ pride parade. But with virtual reality, they can learn more about the global LGBTQ community, and they feel supported by a global community that celebrates diversity.”
After seeing the impact that there was on young people in Colombia, institutions such as the Ministry of Information and Communication Technologies they have shown their support by making it possible for their workshops to reach more children across the country.
“My struggle is not only for my son. It is for all children who have suffered discrimination and harassment from peers, teachers and the community.”