PM De Croo was supposed to do the honours, but he wasn’t able to make it due to the corona crisis. In a video message the prime minister praised the initiative and added that he hoped to attend next year.
Runners up are director Roland Javornik of Hasselt (Limburg) and Glen Mandos, a carpenter from Pelt (Limburg). It’s the eighth time in a row that a competition to select an ambassador of and for Belgium’s Gay community is staged.
Joren is studying to become a primary school teacher. He believes that a lot can be done in the education sector to enhance acceptance of members of the LGBTQIA+ community. He hopes to make a difference in campaigning against child rejection.
“My coming out in 2017 wasn’t easy. Being gay was a bit of a problem at home, so I decided to go and live by myself. Today I feel stronger and I wish to be a role model for youngsters who have a hard time.”
Organising this event amid the pandemic wasn’t easy, but the organisers were determined to go ahead: “Choosing a new ambassador for our country in these difficult times is an important signal” said Bram Bierkens, CEO of Mister Gay Belgium.