15 Feb Mardi Gras: Why visiting Uniting at Fair Day could change your life
It’s Mardi Gras season in Sydney and our Uniting team members are gearing up to represent at Fair Day celebrations.
With 80,000 people expected to gather in Victoria Park Camperdown on Sunday February 17, Fair Day is a chance for us to stand proud – welcoming fair-goers to chat about the ways we celebrate LGBTI communities through our community services and employment opportunities.
What can you get out of visiting Uniting at Fair Day? For Graeme, his life changed dramatically after meeting the team at Fair Day in 2016.
“I felt confident talking to Uniting staff,” Graeme remembers. “I knew that Uniting was inclusive and I knew that they were faith-based – which was what I was looking for.”
“I knew, going up to the stall, that I wanted a job with Uniting and that I wanted to be in the stall the next year. Just seeing them there confirmed what I had thought.
Uniting welcomes people exactly as they are: all faiths and even no faith. This resonated with Graeme, who wanted to be part of an organisation that was “courageous and serious about what they said”.
The role I always dreamed of
Graeme got what he wanted and landed the role of Local Area Coordinator.
“It turned out to be the best job I have ever had – and the hardest,” says Graeme. “I found myself being supported to represent the LGBTIQ community within my section of Uniting. I found myself stepping up to roles that I had previously only ever dreamed of doing. I had wanted to do the things that I was doing, but never had the support to do it.”
“Working at Uniting means being able to be my full, authentic self,” he says. “I feel empowered. I no longer have to think ‘Do people think I’m pushing a personal agenda?’ I no longer have to censor myself.”
We practice what we preach
Graeme says he will be volunteering with Uniting at the 2019 Fair Day because “there is still work to be done.”
“People still need to know that there are faith-based organisations out there that are inclusive. That alone can be part of the healing for so many people.”
“Being at Fair Day not only promotes Uniting services and recruits people who resonate with our values, but it also reminds staff within Uniting that we are inclusive.
“We practice what we preach. It’s not just words on a poster hanging on the walls. We do it. It reminds staff of who we are and why we do what we do.”
All Uniting services are Rainbow Tick accredited. We’re here for you every stage of life with LGBTI inclusive services covering:
- Early learning
- Disability support
- Counselling and mediation
- Aboriginal services
- Foster care (where we welcome same-sex couples as carers)
- Aged care
- And more.
Read more about LGBTI inclusion at Uniting
- Julie McCrossin: Why we still need the Mardi Gras
- Diane’s story: Diversity and acceptance in aged care
- Love is power: Photos from our 2017 award winning Fair Day stall
- Bernette’s story: I can still be who I am
- Alma’s story: A rainbow pathway
Get in touch
To learn more about how Uniting celebrates LGBTI inclusion, look out for Graeme and the team at our Fair Day stall. If you can’t make it to Fair Day, get in touch on 1800 864 846 or email us. We’d love to speak with you.