From 17 February to 5 March, Sydney is transforming into Rainbow City to celebrate the many colours and stories of our LGBTQIA+ community and allies.
This year’s Mardi Gras is extra special, as it will be incorporated into WorldPride, the largest LGBTQIA+ event in the world. It will be the first WorldPride to be held in the Southern Hemisphere!
Being Your Authentic Self
As we start this year’s colourful festivities, our very own Care Concierge Joseph, whom we affectionately call “Uncle Joe”, talks about his fearless, authentic self and Afea’s inclusive work environment.
“When I started at Afea, I was so happy,” Uncle Joe shares. “They are very welcoming and supportive of who I am. Obviously, I am very honest, very authentic. I am gay and proud to be gay.”
Being “authentic” is one of our core values at Afea. Our latest all-staff survey showed that 91% of our staff feel that they belong at Afea and are aligned to the organisation’s vision, purpose and values.
According to Afea CEO, Gaurav Oberoi, “Afea Care Services values and supports an inclusive society that nurtures each one of us to become the best version of ourselves.”
He continues: “Diversity in every way whether it is gender, ethnicity, culture, religion, opinions or skills make us a richer society as a whole.”
Joseph Assad, Head of People & Culture at Afea, adds: “We make a concerted effort to recognise and celebrate the diversity of our workforce in an environment that is courteous, harmonious and unified.”
Gather, Dream, Amplify
The theme for this year’s WorldPride festival – GATHER, DREAM, AMPLIFY – highlights equality and inclusion across generations, with the festival artwork directed by First Nations artist, Jessica Johnson.
Uncle Joe says before he moved to Parramatta, he lived in Surry Hills for 21 years, with the Mardi Gras celebrations happening right next door on Oxford Street.
“I love joining the parade as a spectator and it excites me every year,” he says, adding that it’s always incredible and inspiring to see people express their authentic selves.
Visit Sydney WorldPride to see the full list of events and how to get involved!