The 7th Rainbow Friendship Games (RFG) was held in Ormoc City, the first time it was held outside of Cebu City, gathering over 100 predominantly lesbian players from various parts of Visayas and Mindanao for a basketball tournament, as well as a SOGIE lecture.
The first RFG was held on May 22, 2011, after couple Ana Manzanares and TishaDoris Gabuya Ylaya decided to hold a basketball tournament exclusive to lesbians “because there are no opportunities available for lesbian players to play as a community,” TishaDoris earlier said to Outrage Magazine. “Many of them even have to pretend to be straight to be accepted in women’s teams in school; but after college, there’re no longer opportunities to play at all.”
According to TishaDoris – who is the convenor ng cebuprIde, and regional coordinator for the Visayas of Rainbow Rights Project Inc. – RFG has become a way “to encourage those who just want to play or simply want to learn to play the sport to join us.”
Aside from the basketball tournament, RFG also has an education component via a lecture on SOGIE, which TishaDoris said is “an important part of RFG every year… as it is meant to raise awareness for LGBT rights and lesbian empowerment.”
Six teams traveled to Ormoc for the 7th RFG – i.e. three from Cebu: Cebu All-In, Cebu Mom’s Builders, Cebu Eyrie; two from Ormoc: Ormoc Warriors and Ormoc Tigers; and a team from Baybay, Leyte: Visca Team Handos
Cebu All-In emerged as the champion; with the Ormoc Warriors as the runner-up.
Already, the plan is to bring RFG to other cities, “hopefully in Dumaguete in 2018 since their team, led by team captain Yoy Flores, has consistently joined us since the inception of RFG in 2010,” TishaDoris said.
The 7th RFG was done in partnership with the office of Mayor Richard Gomez, with special support from the office of Councilor Goito Yrastorza.