GLHV | Promoting LGBTI Victorians' health & wellbeing
End of Year Edition
A new website and more 2019 highlights
2019 was a big year for Rainbow Health Victoria, our first since embracing a new name and launching a new look website. These changes reflect our renewed commitment to represent the diversity of the communities we work alongside.

Since 2003 Gay and Lesbian Health Victoria (GLHV) has played an important role in improving the lives of LGBTIQ Victorians. As Rainbow Health Victoria we continue this work, generating research and knowledge translation, training, resources, policy advice and service accreditation through the Rainbow Tick.

Please find below some of our highlights from 2019. Thank you for helping us make them happen.

We look forward to working with you into the future.
  Warm regards,
Marina Carman 
Jen Power

Rainbow Health Victoria
Research and Policy
We were very proud to assist in promoting two major surveys of LGBTIQ communities this year. Private Lives, a national survey of the health and wellbeing of LGBTI people and Writing Themselves In (now called This is Me) a national survey of LGBTIQ young people. Both surveys exceeded expectations and targets for participation.

In 2020, Rainbow Health Victoria will be closely involved in survey analysis and reporting of results. We look forward to sharing vital information about the current health and wellbeing of LGBTIQ communities and being part of conversations about how this could influence policy, programs and practice.

In 2019, Rainbow Health Victoria has continued to be a leading voice in LGBTIQ health and social policy at

both the state and federal level, working closely with organisations such as Thorne Harbour Health and Switchboard. Key achievements include significant submissions to the Royal Commission into the Victorian Mental Health System and the Terms of Reference for The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability, and advice to government on housing, religious freedoms, family violence, LGBTIQ family counselling, mental health and intersectionality.

Vals LGBTI Ageing and Aged Care 
In 2019 Val’s (previously known as Val’s Café) turned 10. The sector involved with LGBTI ageing and aged care space has changed a lot, with Val’s contributing to important reforms. Some of these include:
  • amendments to the federal Aged Care Act recognising the needs of older LGBTI people;
  • Diversity Planning and Practice in Victoria now requiring Victorian community care service providers to plan and deliver LGBTI inclusive services;
  • replacing the national LGBTI Ageing and Aged Care Strategy with the Aged Care Diversity Framework and LGBTI Action Plan,
We have also been part of the growth of research to help understand the experiences and needs of older LGBTI Australian’s, tailored education programs, resources and more. In addition, we have assisted many ageing and aged care providers to achieve Rainbow Tick accreditation.

Throughout 2019, Val’s has continued to support Commonwealth Home Support Program and HACC PYP providers in Victoria through a range of initiatives. Working with regional sector development teams, Val’s partnered on two regional forums (Gippsland and Southern regions),
participated in a number of events, initiatives and educational opportunities promoting LGBTI inclusive service development and delivery to support the capacity of the sector.

In October, Val’s successfully hosted the 4th National LGBTI Ageing and Aged Care Conference 'Ageing with Pride' in partnership with the National LGBTI Health Alliance Silver Rainbow Program. Over 200 delegates came together to share information, knowledge and experiences to improve the health, wellbeing, care and visibility of older LGBTI people, people living with HIV, LGBTI people with a disability, and their carers. The program included keynote speakers Georgina Beyer and Ita Buttrose, together with an outstanding range of speakers and the voices of community.

Val’s also continued to provided education to the ageing and aged care sector through the national LGBTI Ageing and Aged Care Awareness training program, and a range of other training opportunities throughout the state.
Rainbow Network
2019 has been another big year for Rainbow Network. We launched a new website (check it out!) We have continued to deliver evidence-based LGBTIQA+ youth inclusive practice training, and develop and disseminate resources about inclusive practice to thousands of professionals all over Victoria.
We hosted professional development events to over 500 participants;
  • Recognising and responding to smoking as a health issue for LGBTQ people,
  • LGBTI Allies Intersex Training - delivered by Bonnie Hart of AISSG
  • Closets to Classrooms - a community of practice group for people who deliver LGBTIQ+ inclusive practice training.
  • Q-Groups - Collaboration for the Health and Well-being of LGBTQI+ Young People 
  • Out and Active: Community of Practice Group for Sport and Recreation Settings
  • What Does it Mean to Be a Bisexual or Pansexual Young Person?
  • TRANScending Discrimination in Health & Cancer Care
  • Creating Queer Youth Events
  • Trans and Gender Diverse Inclusive Practice- presented by Zoe Bell Gender Collective
Membership of Rainbow Network grew by almost 200 people over this year. We now have a social media following of over 2000 across several platforms. Our newly established Facebook page has had a six-fold growth in following over this year.

Throughout 2019 Rainbow Network continued to advocate for services and spaces that support the health and wellbeing of LGBTIQA+ young people and their families, through submissions, including to the Victorian Mental Health Royal Commission, and the National Youth Strategy Consultation, as well as secondary consultation, and representation on various board and advisory groups.

As always, our work happened in partnership and collaboration with many other community members and organisations, in particular the HEY partners, YACVic, ZBGC, Minus 18, City of Moreland and Brunswick Baths, Bonnie Hart, Cancer Council Victoria, Melbourne Bisexual Alliance, Q West, Q East, Respect Network and Quit Victoria, to name just a few.
Intimate Partner and Family Violence
Our Intimate Partner and Family Violence team had our biggest year yet. We continued to work hard on our existing Family Safety Victoria contracts to build the capacity of the mainstream family violence sector. 
We also began supporting two refuge sites to become LGBTIQ safe and inclusive using a mentoring framework. This involves documenting the learnings from this initiative and creating a practice guide to inform future work. This is an important contribution to creating refuges in Victoria able to provide safe service for people with diverse sexualities and genders.
We started work on a new project in primary prevention, beginning with a literature review looking at the drivers of LGBTI intimate partner and family violence with the intention of creating an evidence guide for future work in this area. Watch this space in 2020 for some more exciting outputs from this project!
The team also contributed to building knowledge at a national level with a plenary and concurrent session at the 2019 STOP Domestic Violence conference. Both presentations had great feedback from the delegates, many saying it shifted them to think about their work in whole new ways. 

The LGBTIQA+ Family Violence Sector Network continued to provide peer support to professionals and link them up with LGBTIQ allies in related sectors.
Membership grew to 240 members representing roughly 100 organisations. The network held four well-attended forums and workshops for members this year:
  • Rainbow Tick Workshop: Unpacking the hard stuff
  • Seeking Safety: Housing and Homelessness pathways for LGBTIQ people
  • Working with people who use Violence within LGBTIQ Communities 
  • Trans and Gender Diverse Inclusion in Family Violence Services: Policy and the Law
The team delivered 40 sessions of “The Dark Side of the Rainbow “training, and 17 sessions of “Introduction to LGBTIQ FV” training for family violence staff members at organisations across the state. This means that over 2,500 Family Violence professionals have attended this training this year. We also delivered 8 streams of HOW2 Training (32 training days) to roughly 120 people and 56 organisations. This reaches a total of 484 hours of time in the classroom across the team, so we are all looking forward to a well-deserved holiday break period!
Training and Accreditation
The Rainbow Health Victoria team have delivered a record-breaking number of training and professional learning events over 2019, with 6000 people participating, from hundreds of different organisations.

Across our programs in 2019 we delivered 142 sessions of LGBTIQ inclusive practice training to 4750 participants from 110 different organisations.

We delivered 10 HOW2 4-day programs to 170 participants in 72 different organisations. We also hosted 16 full-day issues-based professional development events designed to increase participant knowledge of different intersections of lived experience or practice, for example; training, aged care, youth work, or family violence. In total 1200 participants attended these sessions from hundreds of different organisations.
Rainbow Tick Accreditation has had increased uptake across health and human services, with a number of notable organisations successfully achieving accreditation. These include VincentCare, Mallee Sexual Assault Unit and Domestic Violence Services and BreastScreen Victoria. A large number of organisations, the largest in the history of the program, completed the HOW2 program in 2019, and we look forward to hearing the outcomes of recent accreditation cycles as assessments are finalised.
Copyright © 2019 All rights reserved.

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Rainbow Health Victoria, ARCSHS, La Trobe University · Building NR6 · La Trobe University · Bundoora, Vic 3086 · Australia

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