Link Wentworth and its staff members embrace and celebrate diversity, inclusion and equality. This was made clear in the lead up to Mardi Gras this year when our Customer Service Team rallied around fellow staff member Michael Phillips who was part of the parade.
Michael is a member of the Sydney Gaymers float and has been involved with the parade for nearly 10 years. He now designs and plans the float, which is a great achievement.
Inside Link Wentworth, Michael finds it very rewarding to be able to talk residents through any issue and help them find a solution.
Read our Q&A with Michael below to learn more about his passion for the Mardi Gras festival.
Why is Mardi Gras important?
Mardi Gras is an event that brings visibility to queer culture. It was once a protest in the 1970s when it was illegal to be outwardly queer. It has now developed into a celebration that honours the struggles and achievements of the queer community. Mardi Gras hopes to uplift the community, especially people that may be exploring their sexual identity.
How long have you been involved in the Mardi Gras?
I have been involved since 2014 when I marched with the Sydney Gaymers. It was my gateway to explore the queer community and find my place with those who share the same interests as me. 2022 is my first year as an Administrator, jumping full force into designing and planning the Sydney Gaymers Float.
How can we support and participate?
As well as being part of the festival, you can join fundraising events and donate to queer organisations such as ACON, SWOP and Twenty10. Create dialogue that raises awareness of queer culture, especially with children and young people.
What is your best Mardi Gras experience?
My first ever Mardi Gras parade was the most validating moment for me, as I walked down the middle of Oxford Street with the Sydney Gaymers. The support from the crowd as they cheered us on was a memory I will never forget, and will treasure for the rest of my life.
You can view the Sydney Gaymers in action this year on Facebook.
If you want to make real and sustained difference in the communities Link Wentworth serves like our staff member Michael, please view our Careers Page, where you can also view current positions.