The Gay8 Festival is a Hispanic LGBTQ social justice, cultural arts, film, music and food street festival in Miami's historic, Little Havana neighborhood. The festival will take place on Sunday, February 17, 2019 (from 11 AM to 10 PM) and will blend all of South Florida's delights into one gigantic "fiesta of a lifetime." The festival will stretch for three fun-packed, activity-filled blocks from 14th to 17th Avenues, and will offer food, music, entertainment, free films, cultural walking tours, opportunities to tour local galleries and a community "Tertulia," which is an arts, literary and philosophy salon where the community and allies can come together to perform, write and converse about the things that matter most to them. The festival is a magical event that captures the imagination of a wonderful South Florida, Caribbean and Latin American experience!
The festival is preceded by a a community awards reception, Pa'Lante "Forward" Awards VIP Reception, on Wednesday, February 13, 2019, which focuses on honoring community members who have helped move the South Florida community forward.
4Ward Americas LGBTQ Human Rights Symposium
A "4Ward Americas LGBTQ Human Rights Symposium" will take place during the Gay8 Festival Weekend on Sunday, February 17th and Monday, February 18th, 2019. Thought leaders from the U.S.; Canada; the Caribbean and Latin America will deliver keynotes, panels and workshops to audiences at the University of Miami.
We introduced this initiative into the Gay8 Festival Weekend because we know that movements all over the world are trying to determine their best recourse for promoting civil rights, safety, inclusivity, equity and a host of other pillars to ensure a free and equality driven life. With so many groups and individuals working in their regions and making significant gains, we believe that our recourse is greater connectivity and collaborative efforts.
Our goal is to promote the notion that working with our neighbors leads to greater empowerment in local communities. When one can “think globally” while “acting locally,” it can lead to greater gains, especially if connected to a network of transnational support.
In an effort to support LGBTQ communities to prevail, the Americas: LGBTQ Human Rights Symposium was created to promote shared learning about the regions across the Americas, identify the present states of reality in LGBTQ communities across the Americas, promote cross-national collaboration in the Americas and stimulate innovation and improvisation through progressive Symposium topics and opportunities for collaboration.
Gay8 Festival Weekend "Community Advocacy Day"
Civic responsibility rests upon all of us to be engaged. The word “civic” comes from the Latin word civicus, meaning citizen. "Responsibility" comes from the Latin word responsum, meaning reply. It therefore means "citizens reply" and is a call to us that we must always remain engaged and ready to reply to the needs of our community.
One of our civic responsibilities is environmental awareness. Therefore, we have programmed a "Community Advocacy Day" the day prior to the Gay8 Festival on Staurday, February 16th, taking place at Vizcaya Village where the all parts of the South Florida community can participate in a free climate literacy training conducted by the CLEO Institute. After the training a complimentary walking tour of the Vizcaya Gardens will take place.
ImpactOUT International Initiative
ImpactOUT International Initiative connects, educates, inspires, and empowers the LGBTQ+ community by strengthening solidarity and creating impact
for the goal of inclusion, equality and justice through awareness campaigns, human rights symposiums, community lecture series, and LGBTQ+ human rights educational programs for youth.
Our goal is to "think globally while working locally" to bring international LGBTQ+ human rights content to the South Florida community while building bridges and collaborations with our global LGBTQ+ counterparts.
4Ward Miami Cultural Arts Programs
4Ward Miami supports cultural arts initiatives and cultural arts events with the goal to inspire social progress.
Our "Tertulia," is a cultural arts salon produced during the 2018 Gay8 Festival where literary art, open-mic poetry, story writing, music and performance art was showcased to inspire social change.
4Ward Miami co-produces independent film projects with past projects involving "Major League Cuban," and the co-production of "Sister," a one-hour documentary highlighting the work of death penalty abolitionist Sister Helen Prejean (best selling author of "Dead Man Walking").
4Ward Miami both commissions and/or collaborates with partners to promote community development through cultural arts projects. We are currently collaborating on a community development cultural arts project in Cote d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), with Maison De La Culture (House of Culture) and their trustee partner, Amnesty International Cote d'Ivoire, where we are directly supporting the commission of a library in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire, to archive LGBTQ history, documentation and a writing center for LGBTQ youth to learn creative writing skills so that they can write and recite their stories in order to promote diversity and inclusion in Cote d'Ivoire and beyond! Our additional goal is to cross educate the LGBTQ communities in both Cote d'Ivoire and Miami on community development through collaborative cultural arts projects like this one.