Advance Diversity Services (ADS) has lined up some great speakers for our Building LGBTIQA+ Inclusion Speakers’ Panel, a FREE forum at Hurstville Library on Thursday 8 June.
They bring a range of expertise and lived experience and will provide insights into:
- The work they do with LGBTIQA+ people.
- How you can better support LGBTIQA+ people in your own services.
- What support and resources are available.
- What meaningful inclusion looks and feels like to members of the LGBTIQA+ community.
You can also ask them questions during our Q&A and networking lunch.
Daniel Comensoli (He/Him) – Relationship Manager, Pride in Health + Wellbeing
Daniel joined Pride in Health + Wellbeing in September 2022.
Daniel has a strong background in LGBTIQ+ health policy and advocacy, most recently working as a Policy and Research Coordinator at LGBTIQ+ Health Australia (LHA). During his tenure at LHA, Daniel was instrumental to LHA’s responses to the Disability and Aged Care Royal Commissions, the Productivity Commission’s inquiry into mental health, the Australian Human Rights Commission’s inquiry into intersex human rights, the Australian Law Reform Commission’s inquiry into the Family Law System, and proposed federal religious freedom legislation. As a proud gay man, Daniel is passionate about promoting culturally safe health and wellbeing services to LGBTQ communities, as well as reducing discrimination, stigma and violence in an effort to improve their overall health and wellbeing.
Antoinette Chow (She/Her) – Chief Executive Officer, ADS
Antoinette is highly experienced in the community services sector with more than 30 years’ involvement in a number of organisations, designing and delivering programs that have positively impacted a wide range of community groups. Since 1991, Antoinette has been actively engaged with organisations that deliver multicultural services. Before joining ADS, Antoinette worked as Settlement Service Coordinator with Gymea Community Aid, as youth worker with Cabramatta Community Centre and other roles with University of Technology and University of NSW. Antoinette is passionate about enhancing the wellbeing of CALD people from the LGBTIQ+ community and strongly supports building LGBTIQ+-inclusive workplaces, particularly in multicultural settings.
Anthony Scerri, (He/Him/His) – Manager, Settlement and Community Programs, ADS
Born and raised in Wollongong, Anthony Scerri has over ten years of experience working in the Illawarra and Sydney regions. Anthony’s Maltese background has played a significant role in shaping his commitment to promoting diversity and inclusivity. His passion for this field stems from his multicultural upbringing in the southern suburbs of Wollongong and his close relationship with his Maltese grandparents. He is deeply inspired by the sacrifices they made to migrate to Australia post-WWII and their ongoing settlement journey. Anthony’s unwavering motivation to assist others in their settlement journey is a testament to his dedication and commitment to making a positive impact in the lives of others. Before joining Advance Diversity Services, Anthony worked on youth development projects with the Multicultural Communities Council of Illawarra. He also served as a Visual Arts Teacher with the NSW Department of Education and the Catholic Education Diocese of Wollongong. In recent years, Anthony has been instrumental in driving LGBTIQA+ inclusion work at Advance Diversity Services (ADS). His efforts have contributed to ADS being recognised as the Health + Wellbeing Equality Index (HWEI) Service Provider of the Year in 2019 and attaining gold tier status in both 2019 and 2020.
(Lived experience speaker)
Epipola Taulafo (Pola) (She/Her) – Facilitator and co-trainer at STARTTS
Ms Taulafo is a facilitator and co-trainer in the STARTTS LGBTIQA+ project. She was a founding member of this project and has been instrumental in developing training and outreach. Her background is in teaching in her home country of the Kingdom of Tonga. Since being in Australia she has worked in a variety of positions including administration and as a support worker for aged care, disability and overseas aid agencies. She is a skilled communicator and an advocate for Trans people of colour and for all people who have sought asylum on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Ms Taulafo is committed to justice, human rights and equality. She is currently studying a Diploma in Community Services and Mental Health and works as a casual interpreter. She also designs and creates traditional Tongan attire and teaches traditional dance to nurture access to Tongan culture.
(Lived experience speaker)
Cedric Yin-Cheng, (He/Him) – President at Australia & New Zealand Tongzhi Rainbow Alliance Inc (ANTRA)
Cedric was born in Shanghai, China, and grew up in Hong Kong. He works professionally as a Lawyer in Western Sydney. Cedric founded the grassroots not-for-profit ANTRA in 2018 and currently serves as its President. ANTRA was founded as a ‘home away from home’ for the Mandarin- and Cantonese-speaking LGBTQI+ people in Australia. ANTRA connects, represents, educates, supports and advocates for Chinese-speaking LGBTQI+ people and seeks to create a safe and proud environment for the community. ANTRA now has six executive committee members, 50 volunteers and more than 3,000 members nationwide, with officers present in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Adelaide, Hobart and Perth. Some of ANTRA’s key work includes monthly social and educational workshops, Tong Xing (Mandarin- and Cantonese-speaking LGBTQI peer support program) and involvement in several key events such as the WorldPride Coming Out Coming Home Queer Chinese in Australia Creative Portrait and the Mardi Gras-USYD-UniMelb Global Tongzhi Forum. Cedric was a winner of the DFAT National Foundation for Australia China Relations Community Service Award by the ACAA, and 30 under 30 Community Hero by Out for Australia. Cedric has recently been appointed as the Vice President of AGMC – the Australian GLTBQI Multicultural/faith Council.
Kimberley Mignacca – Client Services Supervisor, 2Connect Youth and Community
Kim has practised as a Social Worker supporting vulnerable young people in a variety of settings for 15 years. She facilitates the Glisten project, a monthly social group facilitated by 2Connect and Kogarah Community Services for young people identifying as LGBTIQA+. The Glisten project also supports young people through school advocacy and community capacity building. Glisten celebrates its 20th year in 2023!
Shefali Shah – Community Engagement Coordinator, Kogarah Community Services
Shefali Shah has completed her masters in social work and worked with young people and multicultural groups in community development. She is extremely passionate about creating an inclusive world for all and empowering the local community with programs to build social connection. She supports Glisten with facilitation and program planning and implementation. Kogarah Community Services funds the Glisten program and runs it in partnership with 2Connect and 3 bridges youth centre. Shefali says: ‘We have been extremely happy with the positive impact of the Glisten program on young people and the community and we hope to continue to make a difference together!’
Lisa Osborn (MC)
Lisa Osborn is a trainer and facilitator who has worked in the community sector for over 30 years. In her early career she worked as a frontline worker with women from a refugee background and then moved into training and facilitation. Her work career has led her to specialise in complex trauma. In recent years she has worked as a training consultant providing workshops on domestic and family violence, child protection, culturally responsive practice, and trauma-informed service delivery. Lisa has been employed as a trainer with ACON, STARTTS, Community Services, and Settlement Services International. Lisa is a long-time member of the Sydney LGBTQI+ community.
Don’t miss this special event proudly funded by Georges River Council and the HIV and Related Programs Unit of South Eastern Sydney Local Health District.
We’d love to see you there!
What: Building LGBTIQA+ Inclusion Speakers’ Panel
When: Thursday 8 June, 10.30am – 12pm (Speakers Panel)
followed by a networking lunch 12pm – 12:45pm
Where: Hurstville Library, 12-22 Dora Street, Hurstville
Register: FREE registration via https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/building-lgbtiqa-inclusion-speakers-panel-tickets-623422602787