The Philipsburg Jubilee Library (PJL) will hold a screening of the documentary ‘One Kingdom, One Love’ (OKOL) for teens and young adults on Thursday, October 13, 2016 at 6:30pm.
The screening, held in collaboration with St. Maarten/St. Martin Alliance For Equality (SAFE), seeks to raise awareness amongst the abovementioned cohorts concerning Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, and Transgender (LGBT) realities. ‘One Kingdom, One Love' is a documentary which follows the Kingdom Boat that sailed in Amsterdam Pride Canal Parade in 2015. This boat, which held representatives from the entire kingdom, ultimately won top honors for its theme and execution. The documentary was directed by Sebastiaan Kes and produced by Academy Pictures. OKOL, which has English subtitles, explores the concept of equal rights for all in the Kingdom of the Netherlands by telling the stories of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender persons from Curacao, Aruba, Bonaire, Saba and St. Maarten. Finally it delves into the fight for equal treatment in the Dutch Caribbean. “As a library we are committed to the issues of tolerance and non-discrimination. We are a library for all citizens of St. Maarten, which includes members of the LGBT community. We know that some persons in our community have strong opinions about LGBT issues and we respect these opinions, however having a strong opinion should not lead to discrimination and intolerance. We noticed that particularly among teenagers there is a lack of understanding about LGBT issues and high school students who have a different sexual orientation often have to cope with name calling and sometimes even bullying. We think the screening the documentary ‘One Kingdom, One Love’ for an audience of young people can contribute to more understanding and tolerance for members of the LGBT community, which ultimately will help to make St. Maarten a more inclusive society,” PJL Director, Monique Alberts, said. After the screening there will be a question and answer segment with a panel including members of the SAFE Youth Committee. “As a committee of SAFE dealing directly with LGBT youth, we think that it is important that their voices and their perspectives also be heard. That is why we were pleased when we heard that the library was interested in hosted this event. ‘One Kingdom, One Love’ creates an opening for dialogue. We know that LGBT youth face tremendous pressures from their peers and we want them to know that we stand with them against the bullying and terror they encounter. They should know that there is a network of support out here for them and that it does get better as they grow up,” Morenika Charles-Arrindell, Youth Committee representative said. Prior to the screening, SAFE will turn over several LGBT books, fiction and non-fiction, to the PJL for its catalogue. “We are extremely happy that the library decided to screen this movie, providing young people with an opportunity to discuss a matter very relevant to our society. The donation of the books to the library is a show of appreciation for its contribution to fostering dialogue within the St. Maarten/St. Martin community. We hope the books are used as resources for growth by LGBT youth, adults, allies and those needing more information about what it really means to be LGBT,” SAFE President, Lysanne Charles-Arrindell, said.