At a time when community organisations have come under increased scrutiny over financial management, iRIS Group Productions has proven a shining success story, having donated almost $200,000 to 11 GLBT charities and organisations over the past three years.

Among the top recipients of the donations are the Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby, AIDS Trust of Australia, Queer Screen, Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service (GLCS) and Twenty10.

The Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby received $95,000, with $30,100 going to Queer Screen and $28,845 to the AIDS Trust of Australia.

The money was raised primarily from the Azure Party, held at the Fleet Steps at Mrs Macquaries Point in February, which iRIS claims is the best gay and lesbian dance party in the southern hemisphere.

We are delighted to deliver one of the best good news stories the gay and lesbian community has heard in years, executive producer of iRIS Jay Myers said. It’s a pleasure to add real financial value on this scale.

The production and artistic teams have worked extremely hard to raise the money to deliver these grants. We are all proud of what every beneficiary has achieved with our grants.

GLCS received $10,000 from iRIS. According to executive officer Chris Wilson, the funding is essential to the ongoing operation of the charity.

Without their contribution, the GLCS would not be able to provide such a high level of volunteer counselling support to the community.

Meredith Turnbull from Twenty10 GLBT Youth Support, which also received $10,000 from iRIS, said their grant goes towards work with the homeless and disadvantaged young people of the community.

Twenty10 will again use the money to sustain our group programs which provide education and support in the key areas of living skills and personal development.

After the success of the past three years, iRIS is now reviewing its grants program. IRIS claims it closely monitors how its grants are spent to ensure the money is directed where the community needs it most.

We will shortly be calling for applications for future iRIS grants, chair of the iRIS stakeholder board Iris Ritt said. Of course we will continue to donate to our key beneficiaries -“ the Lobby, GLCS, Twenty10 and the AIDS Trust.

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