Stephen LeHane


Mr Gay Europe 2023

Why do you want to take part in MGE23

Having participated in Mr Gay Europe 2018, I’m aware of the fantastic opportunity that this is to meet with my community across Europe, and work together to find solutions for important issues. I’m excited by the opportunity to reengage in the wider European LGBT community and learn more about LGBT lives across Europe.

What is the biggest LGBT challenge in Europe today

I believe one of the biggest challenges for the LGBT+ community today, is the safety and access to suitable resources for trans people. Figures are showing that verbal and physical abuse of trans people across Europe are on the rise, with 41% of trans people in Britain having experienced a hate crime or incident because of their gender identity. I feel strongly that LGB people are needed more than ever to be vocal allies in support of trans people.

Your profession / study

I work in managing early careers programmes, specialising in supporting candidates from diverse backgrounds to get their first start in industries where they’re under represented.

Your hobbies

A big hobby of mine is sewing and crafting. Whether it’s upcycling second-hand clothes, creating wild sequin costumes for events, or embroidering cushions for my flat, you’ll find me at my sewing machine most Sundays. I also love exploring galleries and museums. If you’re ever in London, I highly recommend the V&A’s LGBT+ community tours!

Why should you become MGE23

I believe that the title of Mr Gay Europe is an incredible platform to make positive changes in our communities across Europe. I would be honoured to have the opportunity to utilize this platform to help push forward just a few of the important issues that affect the beautiful community that I’m so proud to be a part of.

What is the biggest mental health challenge in the LGBT community today

I believe that one major challenge relating to the mental health of people within the LGBT community is alcohol and substance abuse. Without adequate tools or support to handle mental health struggles, we often see people within our community turn to alcohol or substance abuse as a form of coping, or escape. I think there is a huge opportunity within the LGBT community for us to sign-post healthier resources for coping with struggles with their mental heath.

Your idea for your national costume

My concept for national costume would be a fashion adaptation of a mythical Celtic warrior, CĂș Chulainn. As I’m passionate about the environmental effects of the fashion industry, I would plan to use 100% sustainably sourced materials – repurposing fabrics from second-hand clothes, and scrap leather, which are the offcuts of leather that upholsterers discard after cutting the pieces to make sofas.