A BITE OUT OF OUR PINK WORLD http://www.pinkinourlives.com
After a week-long competition in Sweden and Norway last week Mister Gay Belgium 2016 Raf Van Puymbroeck was declared the winner of the contest of Mister Gay Europe 2016 on Friday the 5th of August in Oppdal, Norway.
The ten delegates all week faced a number of challenges which included a written test to find out their knowledge about LGBTI rights around the world, a job interview in front of the Mayor and Vice Mayor of Oppdal and leading LGBTI figures, a sports challenge where the delegates took part in an endurance test, social media skills, and an online public vote. The delegates were also asked to choose amongst themselves who they thought should be Mr Gay Europe 2016.
The announcement was broadcast live to 40 countries around the world with the level of engagement on social media being the highest it has ever been in the Mr Gay Europe history. Interactions came through from as far as Far East, Latin-America, the US and Jamaica.
Managing Director of Mr Gay Europe, Stuart Hatton Jr said, “This was the closest competition we have ever had and the standard of delegates this year was incredibly high. Each day the leader board changed and it came down to the final few votes making it the most exciting Mr Gay Europe competition to date. I am delighted Mr Raf Van Puymbroeck has won Mr Gay Europe 2016 and I am looking forward to working alongside him to further our European LGBTI fight for equality”
On accepting his title Raf Van Puymbroeck commented: “This is a huge honour, it means so much to me and all the people who have supported me. I can’t wait to start working with the Mr Gay Europe team and look for to start working on different projects.”
Co-founder and President of Mr Gay Europe, Tore Aasheim said, “This is the 10th time we have produced Mr Gay Europe and I feel that the competition has found its form and I am delighted that Raf Van Puymbroeck took home the victory. Raf’s youth and excitement for the challenges ahead I am sure will resonate well with the younger members of the LGBTI community who in many countries lack the support of young role models.”
Today Raf got an homage at City Hall from the deputy mayor Ludo Van Campenhout in the city Antwerp, where Raf lives now. Alderman Van Campenhout is not only deputy Mayor, but also alderman of Sports and he is very proud at Raf. Raf’s engagement as Mister Gay Belgium and now also as Mister Gay Europe is that there should be more acceptance for LGBTI people in sports and he wants to put sports and diversity on the map, locally and internationally.
Raf thanked in his speech again the organizers of Mister Gay Belgium Bram Bierkens and Ivan Denis for their support and guidance, but also his family, friends and volunteers of the organization. Hec ould not do this all without them. He looks forward to bring his message to the public and be a great ambassador for the gay community. Ludo Van Campenhout didn’t only applauded this message and engagement, but he gave Raf a big kiss on the lips to prove it.