Australia's Got Talent and The Voice singer Jack Vidgen will be performing at the LGBT+ Out ‘n’ Proud Festival.
Australia's Got Talent and The Voice singer Jack Vidgen will be performing at the LGBT+ Out ‘n’ Proud Festival.

Kings Beach festival unites all

Kings Beach will be an array of bright colours this June with flamboyant characters hitting the beach for the upcoming LGBT+ Out 'n' Proud Festival.

Similar to Sydney's gay and lesbian Mardi Gras, the festival aims to celebrate the diverse LGBT+ community here on the Sunshine Coast.

Just Be Proud co-founder David Newman who hosts the event started his foundation after his mother was bullied in her workplace for being gay.

"It is a loud, proud and welcoming celebration of people, pride and culture," Mr Newman said.

"Both a celebration of the different backgrounds and cultures that make Australian communities so diverse."

Gay and Lesbian rights advocate and 2011 Australian of the year Shelly Argent said LBGT+ events that were once frowned upon were now held in a positive light.

"It's just about normalising it because I don't see anything wrong with it. I just think these events are good things," she said.

"As a mother of a gay male, I just take all these things for granted, it's not a big deal to me and I think that's what it should be to a lot of Australian people."

Sunshine Coast university's Indigenous services Ally Nicole Copley said LGBT+ events celebrated identity and encourage acceptance which affected overall health and wellbeing.

"If [LGBT+ students] realise they are accepted within a community, they will feel like they can achieve what they want and are well supported."

Out 'n' Proud will feature performances from Australian singers Jack Vidgen and Sheldon Riley and give local artists a chance to perform in a Talent Showcase and win $5000.

The festival will also be raising funds for the Give Me 5 for Kids campaign, Open Doors Youth Service and the 2Spirits program.

Open Doors Youth Service chief executive Chris Pickard said the money would provide youths with support workers who can offer referrals, emergency accommodation, food, clothing and more.

"The support of the wider community is absolutely phenomenal. It is important to acknowledge and nurture our young people who will grow up to be the leaders of our community in the future," Mr Pickard says.

"We are always very appreciative of the support of the wider LGBTI+ community and it is lovely to have such passion and support behind us.

"This year sees our 20th Anniversary which is a huge milestone and something we would not have been able to achieve without such help."

Mr Newman says the LGBT+ wants to their part in making a difference.

"These incredible Not-For-Profit Organisations help to ensure a better quality of life and provide critical support for vulnerable Queenslanders," he says.

" … and we wanted to do our part in helping them make a difference in our communities."

Tickets available here.

Shavonne Hansell is a Sunshine Coast university student and intern at the Daily.



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