Today marks the beginning of Traveller Pride Week, a new event celebrating the rich culture of Traveller heritage with hopes to educate those unfamiliar with their teachings.
The official launch will be held later today at the Oireachtas by newly appointed Senator Eileen Flynn, the first Traveller woman to be voted into government buildings.
Spanning across two weeks, Traveller Pride boasts a diverse array of events celebrating Traveller culture including panel discussions, live music and traditional storytelling.
“[It] is an opportunity for a collective effort to highlight and amplify our uniquely diverse community," explains Bernard Joyce, one of the week's organisers.
The full programme for events will be launched today alongside a panel discussion with the director of Pavee Point Martin Collins, coordinator of Blanchardstown Traveller Development Group Catherine Joyce and NI Traveller activist Amy Ward.
The theme of this year’s pride week is: Recognising diversity and pride within the Traveller community.
1. Happy Traveller pride to every Traveller in Ireland and beyond. This year its brilliant to celebrate diversity within our community. The Traveller community has a long and rich history of culture, language, music and skill. Nomadism is a part of the human experience and many— Eileen Ní Fhloinn (@Love1solidarity) July 13, 2020
A number of live events had been scheduled but were stripped back as a result of COVID-19, meaning all celebrations will now be held online.
Organisers say they want to “help create change and overcome racism and discrimination”, as well as “endorse equality and inclusion” by using ‘#diversitywithin’ on social media platforms.
“I stood for what I believed in all my life, even when it meant pushing through racism and inequality," said Senator Flynn ahead of today's launch.
"As young Traveller women, we need to embrace the diversity of who we are and celebrate this throughout Traveller pride 2020 and beyond."