Dear Mind Readers,
At this time of year I am reminded of the many ways our community comes together. February and March continue to be important months in the LGBTI community’s calendar with the annual Mardi Gras festival. We know that for many in the LGBTI community last year was a troubling time when the marriage equality debate was in full public view, often scrutinising and placing value on personal relationships and the way our community views LGBTI Australians. We know this took a toll on many people’s mental health and wellness.
We also know that the hurt and distress felt last year didn’t all magically disappear with the introduction of marriage equality in Australia, though wonderful it is. I believe that WayAhead has a role in supporting the mental health and wellness of NSW’s LGBTI community which is why on Monday 12 February, WayAhead along with its Collective Purpose partners held a public talk by Sarah Lambert from ACON titled After the marriage equality postal survey – what now for LGBTI mental health? Sarah’s insights were very impressive, and it gave me a better understanding on what the LGBTI community now require from mental health organisations like us. The event was filmed, and we have uploaded it to our website, so if you weren’t there on the night, I encourage you all to watch it.
WayAhead was also at the annual Mardi Gras Fair Day last weekend, talking to the community about how WayAhead can help them with their mental health and wellness. The WayAhead team was able to have hundreds and hundreds of conversations and interactions with people attending Fair Day and as you can tell from the photos from the day it was a lot of fun!
Of course, another huge community coming together during this time of year is Lunar New Year. It is certainly lovely to see our Chinese community celebrate this time of year and I have been impressed yet again by the Lunar Lantern display of all the larger-than-life animal signs of the Lunar zodiac at Circular Quay. WayAhead understands and realises that each culture can view mental health and wellness differently to others, which is why we have had a range of our mental health and wellness fact sheets translated into Simplified Chinese on our website.
Gong Xi Fa Cai to all!