About the Project Team

Meet the project team and learn about what they did to make this project happen. You can listen to everyone’s favourite songs by playing the SoundCloud playlist.

Sarina

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
I am Sarina Avramovic and I am a Peer Researcher. I delegate with my collegues about number of things that we discuss and then put them out to our other people to see what they think!!!

Tell us more about you.
I am a Lesbian my pronouns are she and her. I want everyone to know that its OK to be gay and different and that its cool.

What is your favourite food?
Pizza, spaghetti and a few other things.

What would you like to learn one day?
How to deal with humans who are not humans.

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
My favourite song is ‘Born This Way’ by Lady Gaga

Greg

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
My name is Greg. I am a peer researcher on the project.

Tell us more about you.
I came out to my family in 1989. I have been involved in the LGBTQ general community since then.

What is your favourite food?
Pizza!

What would you like to learn one day?
Nothing for me, but I hope that people in the community are better educated.

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
“Tell me why” by Jimmy Somerville and Bronski Beat

Nathan

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
Nathan Despott. I am the project manager for this project.

Tell us more about you.
I am gay, an identical twin, and a Maltese Australian. I really enjoy getting out into nature, the water, the forest, and walking tracks. I am also a huge fan of science fiction and documentaries.

What is your favourite food?
Always chocolate!

What would you like to learn one day?
I would love to play the guitar.

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
‘Brave’ by Sara Bareilles

Amie

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
I’m Amie O’Shea and I lead the academic research team for this project.

Tell us more about you
I’m a lecturer and researcher in the School of Health & Social Development at Deakin University. I have worked in disability and sexuality for a long time and I work hard to include people in all of the work I do.

I’m also a lesbian, a mum, a bad cook, and part of a family where nearly everyone is neurodivergent and a lot of us are queer.

What is your favourite food?
I love a cheese platter with lots of mixed options.

What would you like to learn one day?
I would love to have chickens and raise them from baby chicks. And learn how to drive on sand dunes!

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
Rainbow Rights theme song

Polly

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
My name is Polly Bennett and I am a researcher for this project.

I have four main tasks: 1. Talking to people about how to get involved in the project and how to be safe when meeting online. 2. Helping run design groups with peer researchers and making sure everyone has a say. 3. Co-creating resources with the whole team. 4. Writing about how this project relates to other projects with people with intellectual disability and LGBTIQA+ people.

My favourite part of this project has been co-creating so many amazing resources! Everyone has put so much heart, thought and care into this project. I am so happy to be a small part of it.

Tell us more about you.
I am a white settler who lives on the stolen lands of the Boon Wurrung and Wadawurrung people of the Kulin Nations. I am a proudly neurodivergent, bisexual / pansexual, agender person with disability. I am also a passionate advocate for social justice and for creating a world where we can all be our fabulous selves – free of fear, violence and social exclusion.

What is your favourite food?
I love contrasting flavours! Like: orange and chocolate, salt and vinegar, lemon cheesecake, basil and chilli, cheese and apple, pickled ginger and wasabi.

What would you like to learn one day?
To play a musical instrument!

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
‘We are Family’, by Sister Sledge – in celebration of all the forms of kinship and solidarity we build, repair and recreate every day.

Pan

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
My name is Pan (they/them), I am an assistant on the project. I helped with research and admin tasks, and I help support the design groups to create resources.

Tell us more about you.
I’m a queer and non-binary trans, Greek-Australian person. I also identify as disabled. I live in Narrm (Melbourne), but I’m originally from lakeside Darinkunjung lands (NSW’s Central Coast). I love cycling in my spare time.

What is your favourite food?
Kimchi

What would you like to learn one day?
Other languages – I’d especially love to learn more Greek and Auslan.

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
‘Immaterial’ by SOPHIE

Jenna

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
Jenna Hepburn (She/Her). I am a project coordinator and I am helping to make this website! I work with the team to create a very rainbow and accessible place for everyone.

Tell us more about you.
I have over 100 indoor plants! I love gardening indoors and out. And I love to spend time with my dogs and other animals whenever I can.

What is your favourite food?
It would be a tie between homemade lasagne, and any Japanese food like sushi or ramen.

What would you like to learn one day?
I hope to learn Auslan (Australian Sign Language) soon.

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
‘Bulletproof’ by La Roux. It’s about being yourself, and being strong. Even after hard times.

Jenni

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
My name is Jenni and I am a Project Coordinator. I work with university systems and coordinate between Deakin University, Inclusion Melbourne, and the design groups.

Tell us more about you.
I am neurotypical and heterosexual. My family came to Australia from England in the 1850s and I grew up in rural South Australia and New South Wales.

What is your favourite food?
I just love food. Lately I’ve been on a bit of a Mexican ‘binge’, with slow cooked pulled beef my favourite.

What would you like to learn one day?
Auslan would be a great language to learn. I’d like to learn how to paint with watercolour.

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
‘I will survive’ by Gloria Gaynor.

Casey

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
Casey (they/them). My work on this project is finding people to participate and making sure they get the right support to be able to participate. Also running one on one design sessions and co-facilitating group design sessions. I also got to interview artist Victoria Atkinson for her story on the website!

Tell us more about you.
I’m a queer, non-binary trans person. My pronouns are they/them. I’m neurodivergent. I was brought up where Yaegl and Gumbayngirr country meet in northern NSW. Now I work in Meanjin/Brisbane and live on Yugambeh country.

What is your favourite food?
Banh mi or lasagne.

What would you like to learn one day?
More about growing my own veggies.

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
‘Shake It Off’ by Taylor Swift. I listened to it when I came out to parents as trans – it’s a good to dance to if you feel a bit anxious.

Hayley

What is your name? What is your role on this project?
Haley Martin. I am a Casual Research Assistant with Amie O’Shea.

Tell us more about you.
I am profound deaf (from birth), and identify myself as a proud Deaf Aboriginal, and my identity is lesbian.

What is your favourite food?
Can’t live without my cheese and love my passionfruit.

What would you like to learn one day?
Love to learn new thing every day, now am studying ‘Deaf Interpreting (DI)’, hope to pass my NAATI sometime this year. (National Accreditation Authority for Tranlsators and Interpreters)

Tell us your favourite song to help LGBTIQA+ people with intellectual disability feel good about who they are.
I am profound deaf which means I can’t hear the music; however, I love the feel of beat – the vibration onto floor.

However, I enjoy social media more as it had closed caption (cc) for me to read and to understand the song/ or new terminology to current.

Advisory Group Members

  • Nathan Despott (Inclusion Melbourne) 
  • Dr Amie O’Shea (Deakin University) 
  • Cameron Bloomfield (Rainbow Rights & Advocacy) 
  • Dr Ruth McNair (Pride Foundation Australia) 
  • Rebecca Feldman (Yooralla) 
  • Kathryn Bartlett (Self-Advocate) 
  • Matthew Parsons (Rainbow Health Victoria)  
  • Associate Professor Patsie Frawley (University of Waikato) 
  • Dean Dadson (Self Advocacy Resource Unit)
  • AJ Barwell-Chung (AGMC) 
  • Jake Peterson (Thorne Harbour Health)

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