Meet Douglas White, he is the Director of Business Development and Social Media for Gay Games 11 Hong Kong 2022.
The Gay Games is the world’s largest multi-sport and cultural event, with and estimated 15,000 athletes from 90+ countries competing in 36 sports. Hong Kong won the bid to be the first Asian city to host the next Gay Games in 2022, showing the increased progress in diversity and inclusion in the region.
Change is happening, but still, Douglas believes the core advertising of the Gay Games 2022 is word-of-mouth. He and his company, PRDA, are working to build a strong and supportive community through social media. “Most people who enjoyed Gay Games 10 held in Paris in 2018 joined the online community for Gay Games 11 Hong Kong. Even though this is a different event, we are able to use that influence to expand the attention. Now those people are hungry for 2022,” Douglas says.
The community was not built solely for promoting the Gay Games in Hong Kong, but it has always been spreading out the positive messages of diversity and inclusion, also the empowerment through sports. Douglas has also built a strong and supportive image of The Gay Games 11 Hong Kong 2022 that attracts people outside the LGBT+ community. The Gay Games have always been open to everyone regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identification, age or ability. The Gay Games is built on Participation, Inclusion and Personal Best.
“There’s been no point in which, I personally have done anything other than be overwhelmed and extremely gratified by the responses that we received. We’ve got messages coming in every day, all day,” says Douglas. Obviously, people are talking about the event, and how it affects their own communities.
The Gay Games community is strong and supportive, and it doesn’t stop growing despite its massive reach. Likewise, Douglas isn’t just active in the community under the Federation of Gay Games but participates in other events that exemplifies diversity and inclusion, such as she1k talks, WISE events, and other sporting events. Douglas states that moving forward, Gay Games 11 to further promote will participate in a range of international sports, education and cultural events.
We can predict more representatives will come from more conservative Asia countries like China, South Korea, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The uplifting spirit of the event will bring different communities together that fosters inclusion of people from all backgrounds.