RECOGNITION of the need to further develop LGBTI advocacy and leadership in central Victoria has been welcomed.
Minister for Equality Martin Foley yesterday announced an $80,000 grant for Friends Alike Bendigo and Central Victoria – or FAB CV – and Community Leadership Loddon Murray.
The partnership garnered the largest share of the $700,000 to be divided among 18 recipients.
Bendigo Says Yes campaign co-chair Tash Joyce said the funds would help continue the valuable community building achieved throughout last year’s marriage equality campaign.
"We had so many people step up as volunteers for the first time, and it will be wonderful to see them continue to be supported as they grow into their leadership roles," she said.
Bendigo Queer Film Festival convener Suellen Pepperell said the whole queer community would benefit from the funding, which will be used to establish a leadership program and grow the region’s support services.
“We will be working closely with FAB CV through this project,” she said.
“It will enable us to learn skills that will help us continue running the festival, which means that the whole queer community benefits.
“The Bendigo Queer Film Festival committee are really pleased that the government is seeking to support LGBTI community organisations like ours to operate more sustainably.”
Out of this world! $80,000 for Bendigo's #LGBT community & “Bendigo Says Yes played a really important role,” Ms @leahsertori said. Thanks Leah - we're well chuffed to have helped make a difference. #Bendigo#Equality#queer#auspol#springst#LGBTIQAhttps://t.co/D9Z3ryecaG— CampaignHQ (@BendigoSaysYes) April 17, 2018
Former public health lecturer Dr Linda Kirkman welcomed the recognition the grant afforded rural LGBTI people.
“The organisational capacity building will enable good governance, which will enhance the sustainability of the organisations,” she said.
“This means they can continue to promote the wellbeing of these sometimes marginalised communities, supporting them to thrive.”