Wimmera young people to attend Minus18 Queer Formal

Loucas Vettos, Emma Hynes and Beau Ladlow hang rainbow decorations at headspace Horsham in support of LGBTI youth.
Loucas Vettos, Emma Hynes and Beau Ladlow hang rainbow decorations at headspace Horsham in support of LGBTI youth.

WIMMERA young people have the opportunity to attend LGBTI formal in Melbourne.

Headspace Horsham has called for expressions of interest for Wimmera young people interested in attending the Minus18 Queer Formal in Melbourne in April.

The organisation received $10,000 in funding in February to support young LGBTIQ+ people to attend the event.

Headspace Horsham LGBTI youth worker and Wimmera Pride Project co-founder Maddi Ostapiw said the trip would fill a gap for young queer people in the region who felt like they didn’t fit in with their school formal environments.

“We know some young queer people who don’t feel comfortable dressing in a certain way that is required of your more traditional formal or debutante ball,” she said.

“The Minus18 Queer Formal is an opportunity for young people to express their individuality by dressing and acting as they choose.

“It’s an event where all manner of sexualities and gender identities are celebrated.

“In addition to time spent at the formal, young people will also be travelling with a small group of adults who run rainbow youth groups throughout the Wimmera.

“The whole trip will be an experience not easily forgotten, and headspace Horsham, Grampians Community Health and the Wimmera Pride Project can’t wait to have some glitter-covered fun with some amazing young people.”

Wimmera Pride Project co-Founder Loucas Vettos said he was incredibly pleased that the group was able to provide this opportunity for young queer people in the region to meet others who share their experiences.

“Living in the Wimmera, queer people can feel isolated,” he said.

“However, with 500 people expected to attended the queer formal, we know that new friendships will be made and that those who travel with us will feel loved and accepted for who they are.

“We want to make sure that the event is not just limited to city kids, and that rural queer youth know that opportunities like the queer formal exist.”

Mr Vettos encouraged young people from across the region to apply for the overnight event, which will be from April 20 to 21. 

Pick up and drop off locations have been arranged in Horsham, Stawell and Ararat.

Ms Ostapiw said expressions of interest closed on March 22 and people could email info@wimmerapride.com.au for a form.. 

She said people could also text her on 0437 244 468 or email maddi@wimmerapride.com.au for more information.