Inspired by the former top referee and gay activist John Blankenstein, the Foundation works on the acceptance of LGBTIQ athletes in organized sports.
Sport clubs play an important role in society because they offer a social structure and a meeting place for nearly four million athletes in the Netherlands.
Many sport clubs think that they are sufficiently open and safe for everyone. In the perception of LGBTIQ athletes the situation is quite different; They lack the space in the club to talk about their individuality.
The John Blankenstein Foundation believes:
• That it is every sport club’s goal to win as a club and as a team player and therefor,
• That everyone should be able to participate in sports and have fun, whoever you are and what your background is,
• That equality, joy and respect are mandatory values of each sport club,
• That a safe environment in every club is mandatory and every LGBTIQ person feels at home as a player, fan, employee or volunteer.
The John Blankenstein Foundation makes the participation of all athletes, regardless their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression negotiable and visible in sports.
The John Blankenstein Foundation uses its influence to put his topic on the agenda of sport federations, clubs and city councils. Via meetings presentations, workshops, training for leaders in sports and coaches, the acceptance of LGBTIQ athletes will gain its place in sports.
In the past years we have given many workshops and presentation at professional and grassroot level sport clubs and cities. Together with Michael van Praag we have visited all Premier League Football Clubs in the Netherlands. We have done workshops and given presentations in football, basketball, field hockey, lacrosse etc.
The John Blankenstein Foundation plays an expert role in Europe. We are member of Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) and European Gay & Lesbian Sport Federation (EGLSF). We initiated the European project Heroes of Football with support of the European Commission.