Lifesavers with Pride had their final rehearsal last night prior to the Mardi Gras Parade this Saturday night. About 60 of us gathered at Bondi Beach to rehearse on the sand, and in Bondi Surf Clubhouse.
We also welcomed both Adam Weir, the CEO of SLSA and Steve Pearce, the CEO of SLSNSW who came and provided their support and best wished for the parade. Both men spoke to the group identifying that surf life saving is a diverse organisation that is keen to attract members from all communities. Within this, they both identified that the LGBTIQ members of SLS provided a crucial link with the LGBTIQ community and noted that our parade entries, both here in Sydney's Mardi Gras, and also for the first time this year in Melbourne's Midsumma march, enable that message to get through. And they added respectively that the work the LWP have undertaken over the last 13 years was groundbreaking in creating these inroads. This was the first time that a SLSA CEO has come to greet our group and was well received. The SLSNSW CEO came last year and spoke, and also marched in the parade last year.
SLSNSW CEO also acknowledged the work that LWP have done in promoting SLS within the community and announced that our two organisations were entering into a Memorandum of Understanding, allowing the two groups to formalise their relationship with each other. This was signed in front of our group, by SLSNSW CEO and LWP Chair Gary Driscoll.
The keen parade participants then proceeded to rehearse on the sand to the delight of many locals, and media gathered.