Standing together for EQUALITY for ALL!
Wyndham Rainbow Neighbours Inc (WRN) is a not-for-profit incorporated association (A005886B) that was established due to the lack of any community group representing the Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual, Transgender, Intersex, Queer etc community in the Wyndham area of Melbourne's west.
Wyndham is one of the fastest growing municipalities in Australia; it incorporates the suburbs of Werribee, Hoppers Crossing,Point Cook, Sanctuary Lakes, Tarneit, Truganina, Manor Lakes, Williams Landing, Wyndham Vale, Werribee South, Little River and Laverton.
We also work closely with nearby Hobsons Bay Council who established the GO WEST program and the Western Region Councils GLBTIQ Working Group that brings together ALL the western Melbourne regional Councils to work together for the good of their GLBTI residents.
Wyndham Rainbow Neighbours Inc (previously known as Meet Your GLBTIQ Neighbours) was launched in April 2012 to much applause from local residents and council. After a trial period of almost twelve months operating as an unincorporated association we decided to become an incorporated association to be able to better represent the Wyndham GLBTIQ community.
Wyndham Rainbow Neighbours Inc is a social/advocacy group for residents of Wyndham and our neighbouring municipalities, we have monthly events and get-togethers, we also liaise with the Wyndham City Council making sure the GLBTIQ community is appropriately represented. We have participated in the 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 International Day Against Homophobia Biphobia Intersexism and Transphobia (IDAHoBIT) events and the local Midsumma events that are run by Wyndham City Council.
As President of Wyndham Rainbow Neighbours Inc, I believe those of us in our community who are in a position to be publicly identified in the press and community in genreal should do so boldly, proudly and without fear. We can be a powerful example to all those who may struggle with "coming out" or finding their place in our complex society as GLBTI etc identified people. I particularly admire those who are publicly open about being Bisexual or HIV+.
By way of living this belief, my story was recently published in the book BOLD - Stories Of Older Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Intersex People; I've been pictured in the local press and my partner and I have been photographed and filmed for GLBTI projects for Midsumma.
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AW72_iSp2z0
LOVE IS LOVE: Link for this video coming soon. Short film was shown throughout the "All You Need Is Love" exhibition @ Incinerator Gallery in Moonee Ponds and also screened at the 2016 Melbourne Queer Film Festival.
Wyndham Rainbow Neighbours Inc aims to end social isolation and promote diversity and acceptance for members of our community by conducting social events and also by participating in general community events and community projects. We were also the driving force for the introduction of GLBTI weekly news publications to become freely avaialble in Wyndham libraries.
We use the term "rainbow" to minimise the need for the ever growing list if "labels" that are applied to the various parts of our community ... we need to be ONE united community not an increasingly divided entity so we can effectively STAND STRONG TOGETHER!
Everyone is welcome to join and be a part of our group, leave your labels at the door and we hope to see you soon!
By Michael Young (Founder and WRN President)
So, who are we I hear you ask?
Well we are all part of the GLBTIQ family,
Bi or Bi-curious
Our aim is to embrace all in a social and not judgmental environs to allow all to fully express themselves and live to their full potential. Whether work, home or play, we want to be accepted and understood for the rare and lovely individuals we are, regardless of "societal pigeon holes"
Why? Our newly formed group is an opportunity for members of the GLBTIQ community in Wyndham and surrounds to come together, meet their likeminded neighbours, and discuss ideas for social and community activities with supportive representatives of Wyndham City. To get a consensus on activities we would support and attend in Wyndham.
How it all started: My partner and I love our “quiet life in the suburbs” and are not interested in going out to pubs, clubs or into the city to socialize. As a result we have felt isolated from the GLBTIQ Community in Wyndham. The first time we actually met other GLBTIQ residents of Wyndham was at the Family Day Event that Wyndham City held in Kelly Park earlier this year as part of the Midsumma Festival, in co-operation with Hobsons Bay Council and their Go West group.
I have hoped that some kind of social group would appear for the GLBTIQ Community in Wyndham for a few years now. We could not even find the local Gay News publications in Wyndham. Following on from the Kelly Park day, the first in Wyndham, and with the help of a couple of others I met there, including the Wyndham City Diversity Officer.
I felt it was a case of “don’t talk about it endlessly, just do it”, so we did it!
Above all, this group is all about Diversity, Acceptance and Integration:
DIVERSITY: Not just gay men, not just Lesbians, but Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Questioning ... both young and old. Also hoping for gay friendly/supportive straight people to join in some events.
ACCEPTANCE: Accepting ourselves, all the variations within our GLBTIQ community, those outside our community, young and old. Also working for full acceptance from the wider Wyndham community.
INTEGRATION: Aiming to feel important contributors to the Wyndham community, being fully integrated within our GLBTIQ community, and then fully integrated into the everyday life of Wyndham.
The future starts there, and we will aim to work together to overcome the sense of isolation and lack of safety that impacts many GLBTIQ residents of Melbourne’s west. We also hope to build up a resource list of local GLBTIQ businesses, services and business professionals in the west. Hoping a variety of activity groups will grow from this focused planning event.
Transgender - By Amy (Previous WRN Vice President)
To be transgender is to be different, there is no avoiding it and it's in your face from the day you decide to come out. There is no hiding it, no avoiding it, and certainly no point in denying it.
- The first thing from a work perspective is to understand how to make this work in your employment. Simplicity, honesty and negotiation, it is the only way. Don't force your issue on your workmates, ask them for help and guidance. If they don't know or understand you then seek help out and guide everyone along at the same time. This can help to empower your superiors and help to provide a sense of suitability and control.
- Medical help is still in it's infancy in this country, there has been some progress since 2009, but more work is needed. Make an appointment to see a Doctor to start the process if you have questions in first instance. If you are not satisfied with the answers you are given, don't stop and seek further support. Not everyone is fully trained in gender incongruence. We can help you get in touch with community resources to provide support and seek a second opinion.
- Network, network, network. The transgender community can be so private that most won't know there is someone right around the corner from you that you can share mutual experiences with. You are not alone, we can assist you, the community can assist you ... so ask for help, look for guidance and above all, realize you're not alone.