Politics

State Department funding ‘drag theater performances’ in Ecuador to ‘promote diversity and inclusion’

FIRST ON FOX: The U.S. Department of State has awarded more than $20,000 for a cultural center in Ecuador to host “drag theater performances” in the name of diversity and inclusion. 

The State Department awarded a $20,600 grant on Sept. 23 to the Centro Ecuatoriano Norteamericano (CEN), a non-profit organization supported by the U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Ecuador, to “promote diversity and inclusion” in the region.

The project at CEN, which started Sept. 30 and runs until Aug. 31, 2023, will include “3 workshops,” “12 drag theater performances,” and a “2-minute documentary,” according to the State Department’s grant listed on the USASpending.gov website.

A drag queen performs in Bogota, Colombia.
(iStock)

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The grant to CEN is part of the State Department’s public diplomacy program, which seeks to “support the achievement of U.S. foreign policy goals and objectives, advance national interests, and enhance national security by informing and influencing foreign publics and by expanding and strengthening the relationship between the people and government of the United States and citizens of the rest of the world,” the website states.

This July 28, 2022, photo shows drag queen Dela Rose performing in a mock election at Cafecito Bonito in Anchorage, Alaska.

This July 28, 2022, photo shows drag queen Dela Rose performing in a mock election at Cafecito Bonito in Anchorage, Alaska.
(AP Photo/Mark Thiessen)

The State Department has awarded hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to the CEN over the years, but the September grant appears to be the first of its kind funding drag performances.

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A drag queen sings during the annual Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv, Israel, Friday, June 12, 2015. 

A drag queen sings during the annual Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv, Israel, Friday, June 12, 2015. 
(The Associated Press)

In 2016, the State Department awarded a $50,000 grant to the CEN to promote the College Horizons program, which teaches English to young people of color. In 2015, it awarded $234,000 to the CEN for the building of a new auditorium.

The State Department did not respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.

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