Bookmark the day
THIS weekend South Perth residents are encouraged to ‘check out’ a human book and help break down discrimination as part of an international movement coming to the Angelo Street Marketplace.
WORKING to break down prejudice and discrimination, the Human Library movement is battling stigma all over the world.
Now the international equalities movement is coming to the South Perth community as part of the Angelo Street Marketplace.
The Human Library encourages residents to ‘check out’ a human book, listen to their unique stories and learn from life experiences.
Rachel Oliver and Lindsay Evans are among the collection of human books, eager to share their stories at the markets this Sunday.
Last week, both Ms Oliver and Mr Evans offered the Southern Gazette a taste of what was to come.
Their stories could not be more different.
Ms Oliver said the Human Library would provide her with the platform to increase acceptance on a subject she held close to her heart.
“I’m a transgender woman, and while it all sounds like a bit of a mouthful, my life is much simpler than most people think,” she said.
“As a trans woman, I’m very much about education.
“I want to get across that we’re normal people in extraordinary circumstances, I live the same as everyone else. I’m not odd.”
Mr Evans, a music teacher and lecturer, has a story filled with anecdotes from his experiences with older students who’d picked up instruments later in life.
“All I hear from parents all the time is ‘oh I’ve always wanted to play but it’s too late’,” he said.
“But it’s never too late and that’s what my story is all about.
“In my experience people always have learning an instrument on their bucket lists.
“You don’t have to be a genius, there’s no mystery or magic in a performing art.”
While the experience of revealing personal stories might seem daunting, Ms Oliver said she was not worried.
“I’m not nervous at all,” she said with a laugh.
“One of the benefits of transitioning is the immense confidence you develop, it’s almost as though you feel you can go anywhere or do anything.
“If you can handle transitioning – the biggest event in your life – you can do anything.
“I’m more than happy to discuss myself and my journey.”
The Human Library will be at the Angelo Street Marketplace this Sunday. Details at www. southperth.wa.gov.au.
Rachel Oliver and Lindsay Evans.