Flourish Australia goes to Mardi Gras: The glamour and the glitter

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Above: The Flourish Australia float with Alison Perizi (right)

As announced by CEO Pam Rutledge in December last year, Flourish Australia now has an LGBTIAQ Employee Network, which will provide opportunities for people to connect and share information. The Network will mostly be virtual, using technology to connect and share information. When we have the opportunity, we will provide opportunities for Network Members to get together. The Network is for those people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans* or intersex, their families, friends and workplace supporters (sometimes called Allies). Employees of Flourish Australia who wish to participate in the Network should email:


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As promised, Flourish Australia entered its own float in the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade as a part of the LGBTIAQ Employee Network, on Saturday 4 March 2017, and we live-streamed it on Facebook. Our theme was “Supporting LGBTIAQ Mental Health and Wellbeing” and our entry message was “Freedom to Flourish.”

Around 40 people were in the float. Some managed to sprout gossamer wings, plumes of exotic feathers and, in one memorable case, even horns (see our story on Mark Anacki,

Photos were taken by sundry and diverse persons but most of our photos here were taken by Milin Thaker.

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LGBTI Employee Network

One of the less glamorous – but most essential – roles was that of the driver of our official float, none other than Jay Irsaj from Business Services.

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Also joining us from the UK was Karen Mellanby, Director of Networks and Communities for Mind UK and her friend all the way from Brisbane Karen Wilson. They are seen above in the middle with CEO Pam and flanked by Alison Perizi (purple fairy) and Clare Evans and Mark Anacki (in green).



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