Around 260 groups formed a colourful and proud rainbow family, ranging from a badminton team to scouts, Brazilian drummers to car enthusiasts, and various community organisations and schools, including, for the sixth time, our Carey Pride and Equality Group marched in the event. Many new school groups also joined us for the first time this year, including neighbouring Xavier College and Melbourne Grammar.
Victorian Premier, the Hon. Daniel Andrews MP, and the Member for Kooyong, Dr Monique Ryan MP, were among those who attended festivities alongside some 40 Carey students, OCGA alumni and staff. We gathered at the Ian Johnston Oval early Sunday to join in the celebrations and message of inclusion and diversity for our LGBTIQ+ students and staff, before the long march to the Catani gardens to the sounds of support from the large crowd gathered along Fitzroy Street.
Allies and friends of the LGBTIQ+ community mentioned on the day that being a part of the Carey Pride Group, whilst the community is relatively small, is such an eye-opening experience. They felt that after such an event, they can better support family and friends and understand with more clarity the gravity of discriminatory issues some students face and how best to tackle them in a way that is respectful and effective. Many shared personal reflections on the day such as:
‘I feel proud that I work at a school where I can participate in a LGBTIQ+ pride march under the school’s banner, holding the hand of the man I love and surrounded by amazing colleagues and students. It would be easy to perhaps take such an act for granted. I don’t.’
And staff member Jonnie Debes mentioned:
The strong message on the day of community and celebration through participation and inclusion most certainly resonated with all involved. We seek to continue to build on our Positive Learner Attributes of connectedness, courage and collaboration through the positive messages being delivered through the students involved in the Carey Pride Group.
Carey’s Pride Group meets on a Thursday, Week A at lunchtimes in the CLI Library for Middle and Senior School students. Our next meeting will be on Thursday 16 February – allies, friends and new members welcome. Our school values of care, respect and growth support Carey’s Pride Group’s 2023 focus for all our members to consider how we all care for each other, develop and maintain a culture of respect and continue to learn and grow this great school we all below to.
Mr Simon Carver
Carey Pride Teacher Liaison