PRIDE AND JOY I N WAGGA
IN “Country Town Pride”, we follow Holly Conroy (pictured, right), a truck driver from Wagga Wagga, as she undergoes gender reassignment surgery and simultaneously organises the first Mardi Gras parade in her hometown. The deeply personal and revealing episode tracks several surgeries she undertakes in Thailand and how important they are in her realising her identity and improving her mental health. Her parents and sister share their respective emotional journeys as Conroy makes her transition – their stories are as enlightening and bravely honest. But not all of her family members are supportive. Neither are her transphobic neighbour or some local religious leaders and politicians. For every heartbreaking moment of prejudice she encounters, the doco also throws up plenty of beautiful and inspiring moments when Conroy’s transition and celebration plans are embraced by football teammates, local businesses, councillors and allies. With gender identity and the struggle of trans people for acceptance and equality – and happiness – the subject of often divisive and explosive media commentary, this timely doco presents a unique opportunity to explore Conroy’s experience in rural Australia. It culminates with thousands of people turning out for the joyous and emotional parade, with Conroy and her supporters hopeful it will become an annual event.