Last week, on International Coming Out Day, I won an important award in Belgium. An award called ‘The OutTV Media Award 2016’. This is an award that is given to someone who has put the LGBT community positively in the media national and/or international. This year, the award was given to me while I was teaching my weekly dance class, so it was a huge surprise.

Previous winners have been Conchita Wurst, and the first president of Belgium; so winning this as a Mister Gay is a huge deal. It’s not only just a price, it’s an encouragement to do even better and to try to make even more a difference.

The price was not only the honour of the price, but also a pink cat designed by Hannes D’Haese. It’s a cat that has written on it ‘It’s okay to be gay’. The cat has had a lot of exposure because it was sent to Russia to Vladimir Putin and was sent back because he didn’t want it (what a surprise).

I feel like this is a step in the right direction. Mr Gay Europe is someone who is an ambassador for the community and a role model. Not just the most good looking guy or who has the best six-pack. It’s time that Mr Gay competitions are taken seriously because we do have an important voice and vision, and we do want to make a change.