The Victorian Minister for Equality, Martin Foley, yesterday announced the 50 recipients of the Labor state government’s first round of the Pride Events and Festival Fund in 2019.
The events, chosen for their promotion of pride and visibility of LGBTI Victorians, focus on indigenous, multifaith, multicultural, rural, regional, outer suburban, bisexual, trans, and gender diverse communities.
“These grants play an important role in improving the lives of LGBTIQ Victorians by increasing visibility, and giving a voice to LGBTIQ communities right across Victoria to ensure people feel proud of who they are,” said Minister Foley.
“Victoria’s LGBTIQ communities have made it clear they want more localised support – and we’re proud to provide extra funding so they can share their lived experiences.”
Some of the events which will benefit from the scheme include the annual Midsumma Festival, Minus18’s Queer Formal, the Coming Back Out Ball and LGBTI Elders dance clubs, shOUT Youth Chorus and Melbourne Bisexual Network’s Bisexual Visibility Day 2019, Geelong Pride Film Festival (formerly known as the Geelong Queer Film Festival), Australian GLBTIQ Multicultural Council’s United We Feast, and Cricket Victoria and Proud 2 Play’s Proud Cricket Day.
In addition to the $500,000 fund the state government has already pledged a $500,000 increase to LGBTI mental health support, a $2.5 million boost to counselling services, and to provide an extra $3 million to help vulnerable LGBTI people avoid homelessness.
Back in 2017 Minister Foley announced $3 million over four years to develop comprehensive specialist services for LGBTI Victorians at risk of family violence.
The Victorian state government will also deliver on their election campaign promise to establish a Melbourne Pride in 2021, marking 40 years since the decriminalisation of homosexuality.