History of Gala

Gala was formed in 1997 to address the erasure and omission of LGBTIQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer) stories and experiences from public institutions such as official archives in (South) Africa. Originally named the Gay and Lesbian Archives (GALA), the aim was to collect and preserve local LGBTIQ narratives, both public and private. In 2007 the name of the organisation was changed to Gay and Lesbian Memory in Action, while retaining the GALA Acronym. This was done so as to address the expanding range of activities Gala had initiated or got involved with, to create dialogue on sexual orientation and gender identity, educate the public, build community among LGBTIQ people, and to inspire action. Now, in 2018, in the celebration of Gala’s 20 years of existence, the name is once again being re-evaluated in order to address the exclusion of other queer identities and orientations in the name.