TEAM SYD­NEY

Team Syd­ney sup­ports health, fit­ness and the sport­ing way within di­verse LGBTIQ com­mu­ni­ties.

DNA Magazine - - CONTENT -

Bring­ing teams to­gether.

SPORT IS a na­tional pas­time in Australia, whether you par­tic­i­pate or spec­tate from the side-lines (or your sofa); whether you’re a hard-core sup­porter or a fair-weather fol­lower; and whether you are gay or straight.

Team Syd­ney and its coun­ter­parts in Mel­bourne, Bris­bane, Perth and Ade­laide sup­port all gay-iden­ti­fied sport­ing clubs, fly­ing the rain­bow flag for gay sports lovers, play­ers and the clubs they be­long to.

Pres­i­dent Stu­art Mackay says the or­gan­i­sa­tion works with teams, clubs, as­so­ci­a­tions and in­di­vid­u­als to grow and nur­ture mem­ber­ship and sup­porter bases. “We do this by con­nect­ing in­di­vid­u­als with the clubs in our net­work and en­cour­ag­ing new clubs,” he says.

Recog­nis­ing the im­por­tance of in­clu­siv­ity, Team Syd­ney tack­les ho­mo­pho­bia in sport. “When and where ap­pro­pri­ate, Team Syd­ney serves as in­flu­encer and en­abler for in­clu­sive sport to other clubs and in­di­vid­u­als, or­gan­i­sa­tions, gov­ern­ment and the cor­po­rate sec­tor,” says Mackay.

The highly vis­i­ble and ac­tive mem­ber clubs of Team Syd­ney are fix­tures at the big LGBTIQ events in­clud­ing the Syd­ney Mardi Gras Pa­rade. It’s be­hind the Sports Vil­lage at Fair Day and var­i­ous other sport­ing show­cases like the Come And Try days held over sum­mer by mem­ber clubs in­clud­ing the Syd­ney Rangers and the Fly­ing Bats (soc­cer), Dif­fer­ent Strokes (dragon boat­ing) and the Syd­ney Out­field­ers (soft­ball).

Team Syd­ney is also a reg­u­lar pres­ence at in­ter­na­tional LGBTIQ events, too, like the up­com­ing Gay Games, be­ing held in Paris this year from Au­gust 4 to 12.

THE GAY GAMES: PAR­TIC­I­PA­TION, IN­CLU­SION AND PER­SONAL BEST

The Gay Games is a world-class sport and cul­tural fes­ti­val or­gan­ised by the LGBTIQ com­mu­nity and hosted in a dif­fer­ent city every four years. Ev­ery­one is wel­come to com­pete in the Games, re­gard­less of their sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion, abil­ity, gen­der, age or race, with­out the need to qual­ify. Its mis­sion is all about par­tic­i­pa­tion, in­clu­sion and per­sonal best.

Founded by Tom Wad­dell, an Amer­i­can de­cath­lete who com­peted at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, the Gay Games were in­tended to pro­mote equal­ity and build bridges be­tween het­ero­sex­ual and ho­mo­sex­ual sports as­so­ci­a­tions.

Like the Olympic Games, the Gay Games grew to in­cor­po­rate am­bi­tious so­cial projects, a pro­gram of cul­tural events and an aca­demic com­po­nent.

The first Gay Games took place in San Fran­cisco in 1982. In 1994, the Games were held in New York to co­in­cide with the 25th an­niver­sary of the Stonewall ri­ots, at­tract­ing 10,864 ath­letes – com­pared to the 9,356 who took part in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.

Gay Games VI was held in Syd­ney in 2002. It was the first, and so far only, time the event has been hosted in the southern hemi­sphere. The most re­cent Games in Cleve­land (USA) in 2014 saw over

8,800 in­di­vid­u­als from 60 coun­tries com­pete in 37 sport dis­ci­plines.

At least 15,000 par­tic­i­pants are ex­pected in Paris and you could be one of them.

GET OUT AND PLAY!

Sport en­hances a healthy lifestyle, helps you make new friends, and link to your LGBTIQ com­mu­nity. There are 35 dif­fer­ent LGBTIQ clubs in Syd­ney, rep­re­sent­ing all sorts of sports from AFL to wrestling. The Team Syd­ney web­site will help you find the one for you.

Fol­low “Team Syd­ney Sports” on Face­book or visit team­syd­ney.org.au and have a go! Watch th­ese space for the up-com­ing June Syd­ney Sports Expo – where you can come along, have a chat and get a feel for what sport is right for you. Find your lo­cal team and get in the game.

MORE: Visit team­syd­ney.org.au or look for “Team Syd­ney Sports” on Face­book.

THE STINGERS (WA­TER POLO).

THE CON­VICTS (RUGBY).

THE RANGERS (SOC­CER).

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