The Warwick Rowers have been publishing calendars of their hunky paddlers since 2009 to raise money for the team, and their most recent one was just released to much panting and hooting. The calendar has been wildly successful, creating book and short film offshoots. All sorts of people can enjoy hot dudes flashing their buns, but unsurprisingly, it has been particularly popular amongst gay men. To thank their fans in the LGBT community, the Warwick Rowers launched Sport Allies, a program designed to reach out to young people facing homophobia.
The response has been huge, of course, and it's also affected people on a more emotional and personal level than photos of butts usually do. This weekend, the calendar's producer Angus Malcolm shared a fan letter he received from a gay teen on Facebook:
His letter reads:
Hi, my name’s Angus. I’m a 17yr old Australian who recently came out as gay to his friends and family. I just wanted to say thank you, so very very much for what you guys do. The promo shots of your calendar and some of the pictures were some of the first ever photos of those kind that I saw. In fact it was the calendar images that made me realise my attraction and thus homosexuality.
But I think the most powerful aspects of the images are that they show that camaraderie and mateship is still possible when there are accepting people who don’t care about your sexuality. They gave me the realisation that when I came out to my friends they wouldn’t treat me any differently, but just like a mate. In fact the day I came out I put one of the posters on my phone lock screen as motivation to come out.
Anyway, I just wanted to say thank you for what you’re doing, fighting homophobia and giving confused guys like me confidence in their attraction and eventual acceptance. As soon as I get a job I will buy one of the calendars and support this great cause, so hopefully you can keep helping others like me.
Wow. Taking your clothes off really can change the world.