Brett Big on Building Community
BY JEM ANSHAW
World Pride took over Sydney for the first time over the past few weeks and it has been such a positive experience for so many including Brett Garland, owner of TDF Events in Muswellbrook.
Brett was invited to be a Sydney World Pride TikTok Ambassador for 2023, and it was something he could not pass up doing.
“I have been on the platform now for a couple of years and created community with a whole range of different people, and being recognized by TikTok because they could see what I was doing for the rural community was fantastic,” Brett shared.
“Building community is so important, whether it is in the form of a queer community, or an indigenous community, if you’re a person of colour or some other community where you’re spending time with like-minded people, you get so much more help and support by finding people around you who enjoy the same things.”
“You are not put in this world to do things alone.”
Brett has been to many Sydney Mardi Gras events, but he said this year was just bonkers with the added energy of World Pride.
“The minute you get there, the city is just alive with colour and rainbows and you feel so safe and included within the wider community,” he shared of the atmosphere when he arrived in Sydney a few days before the parade which took place on February 25.
“Everywhere you go all the shops have displays like the rainbows or other form of inclusivity images, you feel the sense of pride when you’re there.”
World Pride kicked off on February 17 and before hitting the big smoke Brett was invited along to a Chalk and Talk event at Muswellbrook Police Station, where students from local high schools were invited along to discuss what support there is in the area for them as they become more comfortable with their identity.
Support in the community is something really important to Brett and that is why he has created an online platform for the Upper Hunter queer community to come together.
“We’re going to start arranging regular events, it might be going to the pub for drinks, it is about bringing us together to meet and chat and get to know each and every one of us,” he told The Hunter River Times.
“Our Shire is huge and people start to become isolated because they feel like there’s nobody else like them, but we want to show that there is lots of people like them.”
If you would like to connect with this growing local community, reach out to TDF Events on Facebook.