Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer or questioning young people aged 15 – 20 can get involved in a new LGBTIQ youth group happening at The Loft Youth Venue in Newcastle. If you’re interested in getting involved, contact Fiona at The Loft on 02 4974 2099.

A new season means it’s time for your sexual health check. The Sexual Health Clinic at the ACON Hunter Office is now happening on Tuesdays from 3.30-6.30pm. It’s free and confidential, no appointment necessary. ACON is at 129 Maitland Rd, Islington, phone 02 4927 6808.

Out N Hastings hosts fun social events and activities in the Port Macquarie area. October sees a pool comp, a fishing comp, monthly BBQ, and camp out. Visit www.outnhastings.org.au

Speaking of pool, LLINC in Newcastle organise pool for same-sex attracted women every Sunday from 6pm at the Mayfield Hotel and once a month at the Gateway Hotel. Contact [email protected]

Pride and Sexuality Week at the University of Newcastle is happening October 10 – 14. There will be plenty of events, workshops, and fun things going on to celebrate LGBTIQ diversity on campus. Come say hi to ACON at the This Is Oz booth, and get your outfit ready for the ball!

The 2011 Rainbow Festival starts on October 22. Recent additions to the program include an afternoon tea with Shelley Argent of PFLAG Australia, a family BBQ at Edgeworth, and an Amazing Race around Newcastle. For all the details about the Rainbow Festival, visit www.rainbowvisions.org.au

October is Mental Health Month. It’s a time to pay attention to our own and everyone else’s mental health and wellbeing. Come into ACON in October to pick up a pack with resources about how to look after your mental health.

Finally, a huge congratulations to Jo Piggott from Newcastle and Bernie Green from Tamworth, who are finalists in the 2011 Honour Awards. For more information or to book your ticket to the awards night, visit www.honourawards.com.au

INFO: For more about groups, services, organisations or community events in the Hunter, New England, and Central Coast, contact ACON on 02 4927 6808 or email [email protected]

By Lisa Ronneberg, Community Health Promotion Officer at ACON’s Hunter office.

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