The Warsaw-based Chrzaszczyki soccer team is well known as “Poland’s first lesbian curvy white women naked football club”. This week, as well as in light of Andrzej Duda’s re-election that is recent we’d the opportunity to talk to its founder, Italian-born Suzi Andreis, that has been residing and fighting for LGBT+ liberties in Poland for over 2 full decades. She informs us about her work, her tasks along with her experience residing in Poland.
Hi Suzi, many thanks for using the right time for you respond to our concerns. First things first, limitations are gradually reducing up. Just exactly just What was your experience throughout the pandemic?
Covid possessed a giant impact in our task, we had 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 more during the Academy at the start of June but, to date, Covid restrictions allow it to be impractical to arrange a competition, that have all been terminated.
Strange times certainly. But let’s begin at the start. Just Exactly Exactly How did Chrzaszczyki Soccer Team begin?
C hrzaszczyki started very informally in the summertime of 1999. Included in the LBT+ environment, a couple of people in a lesbian email list had the idea fulfill in a park in Warsaw, to pay time together, also to play soccer. It absolutely was type of bull crap. We didn’t have group and incredibly handful of us had any soccer experience. But we liked that really game that is first much that individuals chose to carry on.
“In 1st years, our definitive goal would be to produce an area for womxn within the community that is LGBT Warsaw. ” Credit: Suzi Andreis
Just just What took place next?
In the 1st years, our absolute goal would be to produce an area for womxn into the LGBT+ community in Warsaw. Games would happen on a regular basis, these were available (pickup), we scarcely ever played for a pitch that is real. The concern would be to produce a place where non-heteronormative womxn could fulfill. Soccer ended up being a additional problem. But things changed in 2007 whenever we arranged our very first competition… and it absolutely was a success! We then made a decision to concentrate on soccer, to produce being a team, not merely as community of womxn.
You may be called “Poland’s first lesbian football club”, yet your club is available to everybody else. How will 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 exposure as a “lesbian” team is our governmental statement in Polish society that is homophobic. It is necessary however it’s maybe perhaps maybe not our only objective.
Is why you call it “inclusive soccer”?
We have been mindful that there are many social obstacles that counter womxn from getting 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 much obstacles as you can which will make our projects accessible. Though Polish culture is quite homogenic when it comes to competition, our LGBT+ community just isn’t, LGBT+ folks are various.
“Our visibility as a ‘lesbian’ team is our governmental declaration in Polish homophobic society. ” Credit: Julia Szablowska
Is it possible to expand about this?
Well, our jobs are often totally free, or have symbolic charges, to ensure individuals of low income may take component. We don’t give attention to performance, nor competition: we should produce an area where womxn of any age and of various cap cap cap ability, with or without sport experience may start their adventure with soccer. Numerous at our Academy are womxn that have perhaps not practiced any sport since their childhood and now have to construct from scrape their body that is basic coordination abilities. Additionally, some womxn inside the community that is migrant need to work a couple of jobs to help make ends satisfy in Warsaw. For this reason our trainings take a voluntary foundation, you don’t need to be there each week, you are able to come, join and play whenever you want whilst still being be person in the group. We additionally provide kid caring during trainings
You talked about a times that are few Academy. Is it possible to inform us more info on it?
In 2013, we began the Womxn’s Football Academy, a soccer school for adult womxn, meaning cis/trans, queer and non-binary individuals. The concept of our work is to generate a space that is safe womxn can exercise soccer, free from any style discrimination where individuals can feel safe. We additionally arrange debates, movie tests, exhibitions where we speak about our experience. We skip a solid anti-discrimination motion in Polish soccer. Yes, there’s an evergrowing motion and the specific situation of “women” in football is much progressively visible within the news. But conversations relate genuinely to “women” as a homogenic group that is social to sexism and gender discrimination just. We be involved in this motion, but we believe that the way that is only result in the game accessible is a wider, intersectional approach to deal with 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