A Midsumma day’s dream: My time as a Telstra citizen reporter
I was thrilled to take part in this year’s Midsumma Festival as a Telstra citizen reporter.
Back for its 29th year, Midsumma is Australia’s largest diverse gender and sexuality arts and culture festival, boasting an impressive line up of 100-plus events over three weeks.
I stumbled across the opportunity to volunteer while scrolling through our internal communications network and with the call out drawing me in. Spectrum, our internal Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) employees and allies network was calling for help.
At first I was apprehensive about applying; I hadn’t participated in an LGBTI event before, and going up to people asking to take their photo can be a tad intimidating. I was going to keep scrolling, but my inner rebel yelled “YOLO” and with the added encouragement of my manager, I sent my application.
I attended my first meeting and met the other reporters on board. Some were Midsumma veterans, others total newbies, and each of us came from different areas of the business. We were briefed on our duties and then came the big day – Carnival.
The energy of our volunteers at our stall was electric and the enthusiasm was contagious. We had buckets filled with goodies – handing out totes, water bottles, caps and more. Visitors excitedly debated which colour cap or bottle they would take, and it struck me how well our multi-spectrum branding represents individuality and diversity. It was perfectly fitting for the occasion.
Of course as a round-the-grounds reporter I did venture away from the Telstra stall. Adequately lathered in sunscreen I braved the 32C heat, capturing happy snaps of families, fashionable folk and the odd rainbow-clad pooch.
Roaming in my Telstra cap and NBN WOW sunnies I stealthily pinched from the van, I felt proud to represent Telstra as a company that genuinely and wholeheartedly recognises and accepts diversity – in all its shapes and forms.