LGBT Activist And 78er Peter De Waal Launches GoFundMe Campaign For ‘Final Pilgrimage’
Peter de Waal, a stalwart 78er and lifelong advocate for the LGBTQI community, has launched a GoFundMe campaign at the age of 85.
De Waal, a foundation member of 1970 CAMP Inc – Australia’s first gay-rights movement, is raising funds for what he calls a “final pilgrimage” to visit his homeland The Hague.
De Waal rose to national prominence when he appeared on the ABC program Chequerboard in 1972 with his late partner Peter Bonsall-Boone and shared Australia’s first televised gay male kiss.
Visiting The Homeland
De Waal, who is on an aged pensioner’s budget and faces mobility issues, said he has been diligently saving for his “final overseas odyssey”. However, the financial resources fall short of funding the comfort and support necessary for the journey.
“The call of my homeland beckons. It’s a yearning to bid farewell and lay to rest the echoes of past traumas and spiritual quests tugs at my heart,” said De Waal. “Yet, the challenges are many. My frailty demands the comfort and support of a business class ticket and additional aids and support during travel. For an aged pensioner like me, this dream cannot be done without some support from friends and community.“
De Waal said his homeland, The Hague, held a special place in his life journey. “The Hague holds the tales of my lineage and the scars of World War II and Nazi occupation turmoil. It’s a land that witnessed my trials and tribulations, helping to shape me into a resilient activist. With every challenge faced, my spirit grew stronger, enabling me to serve our rainbow community passionately for half a century.”
‘Every Contribution Matters’
According to the life-long equality activist, money stood between him and his “final pilgrimage to my ancestral land.”
De Waal said he had no option but to turn to his friends and the community to raise the financial resources necessary to make this trip. The activist has set a modest target of $6,900 and has raised around $570 in five days.
“Every contribution, no matter how small, inches me closer to embracing my roots and finding closure. Please, if your heart resonates with my story, extend your hand in this moment of need. And ensure I return to the embrace of my homeland, one last time,” added De Waal.