The Warsaw-based Chrzaszczyki soccer team is well known as “Poland’s first lesbian football club”. This week, plus in light of Andrzej Duda’s re-election that is recent we’d the opportunity to talk with its founder, Italian-born Suzi Andreis, that has been residing and fighting for LGBT+ liberties in Poland for over 2 decades. She informs us about her work, her tasks along with her experience surviving in Poland.
Hi Suzi, thank you for using the right time for you to respond to our concerns. First things first, limitations are gradually reducing up. Exactly just exactly What happens to be your experience throughout the pandemic?
Covid possessed an impact that is huge our task, we needed to cancel our yearly soccer Against Homophobia competition that has been prepared for March 14. We’d and also to stop our regular conferences of our Womxn’s Football Academy task. We been able to start training once again during the Academy at the start of June but, thus far, Covid limits ensure it is impractical to arrange a competition, which may have all been terminated.
Strange times certainly. But let’s begin at the start. Exactly Exactly How did Chrzaszczyki Soccer Club begin?
C hrzaszczyki began very informally in the summertime of 1999. A few members of a lesbian mailing list had the idea meet in a park in Warsaw, to spend some time together, and to play football as part of the LBT+ environment. It absolutely was a type or type of a tale. We didn’t have group and extremely handful of us had any soccer experience. But we liked that really very first game so much that individuals chose to carry on.
“In the very first years, our absolute goal would be to produce a place for womxn into the LGBT+ community in Warsaw. ” Credit: Suzi Andreis
Exactly just just What took place next?
In the 1st years, our absolute goal would be to produce an area for womxn into the community that is LGBT Warsaw. Games would happen on a regular foundation, they certainly were available (pickup), we scarcely ever played on a genuine pitch. The concern would be to produce an area where non-heteronormative womxn could satisfy. Soccer ended up being an issue that is secondary. But things changed in 2007 as soon as we arranged our tournament that is first it absolutely was a success! We then chose to give attention to soccer, to produce as a team, not merely as community of womxn.
You will be referred to as “Poland’s first lesbian football club”, yet your club is available to everybody else. How can you determine yourselves?
Yes, our soccer club happens of this LGBT+ community. But we don’t ask people who wish to join us about their intimate orientation or identification. Possibly the definition that is best of Chrzaszczyki is a lady club with a lot of lesbian, bisexual, transgender womxn. Our presence as a “lesbian” team is our governmental declaration in Polish society that is homophobic. It is necessary however it’s maybe perhaps maybe not our only objective.
Is the fact that why you call it soccer” that is“inclusive?
We’re conscious that there are many barriers that are cultural counter womxn from involved in the overall game. Soccer is actually for example culturally considered a discipline that is exclusively male. We call our game “inclusive soccer” because we make an effort to address as numerous obstacles as you can which will make our projects accessible. Though Polish culture is quite homogenic when it comes to battle, our LGBT+ community is certainly not, LGBT+ folks are various.
“Our visibility as a ‘lesbian’ team is our governmental declaration in Polish homophobic society. ” Credit: Julia Szablowska
Are you able to expand about this?
Well, our tasks are often totally free, or have symbolic charges, making sure that individuals of low income usually takes component. We don’t give attention to performance, nor competition: we should produce an area where womxn of every age as well as various cap cap cap ability, with or without sport experience can begin their adventure with soccer. Numerous at our Academy are womxn that have perhaps perhaps perhaps perhaps not practiced any sport since their childhood and also to construct from scrape their body that is basic coordination abilities. Also, some womxn in the migrant community usually need certainly to work a couple of jobs which will make ends fulfill in Warsaw. This is the reason our trainings take a voluntary foundation, you don’t need to be here each week, you can easily come, join and play whenever you want whilst still being be person in the group. We additionally provide kid caring during trainings
You pointed out a few times your Academy. Is it possible to reveal more info on it?
In 2013, we began the Womxn’s Football Academy, a football school for adult womxn, meaning cis/trans, queer and non-binary individuals. The notion of our tasks are to produce a safe area where womxn can exercise soccer, free from any type discrimination where individuals can feel safe. We additionally arrange debates, movie tests, exhibitions where we discuss our experience. We skip a solid movement that is anti-discrimination Polish soccer. Yes, there’s an increasing motion and the problem of “women” in football is more visible within the news. But conversations relate genuinely to “women” as a homogenic group that is social to sexism and gender discrimination just. We take part in this https://www.camsloveaholics.com/female/ebony motion, but we believe that the only method to result in the game accessible is a wider, intersectional approach to handle social obstacles and prejudices that result in systemic discrimination and exclusion.
“We additionally organize debates, movie tests, exhibitions where we speak about our experience. ” Credit: Julia Szablowska