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HEY is playing a critical role in supporting LGBTIQA+ young people and their communities to bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic.

–Derm Ryan, HEY Program Manager

Twelve innovative initiatives ranging from the storytelling of LGBTIQA+ students in rural Victoria, gender-free haircut spaces, to the first ever Aboriginal LGBTIQA+ youth camp have been funded a total of $110,000 in the tenth round of Healthy Equal Youth (HEY) Grants, administered by Youth Affairs Council Victoria. 

Launched at the 10th annual HEY Day event with Parliamentary Secretary for Mental Health Steve Dimopoulos and Minister for Health Martin Foley, this year’s grants will play a significant role in supporting LGBTIQA+ young people’s health bounce back from COVID-19. See the full list of Round 10 HEY Grant recipients here.

“We recognise the disproportionate impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on LGBTIQA+ young people’s mental health. That’s why this round of HEY grants has focused on funding projects which can support LGTBQIA+ young people in a COVID-safe way,” says Derm Ryan, YACVic’s HEY Program Manager.

“The grants were selected by a panel of LGBTIQA+ community members and prioritised the intersections and gaps in LGBTIQA+ services, with the funded projects supporting international students, autistic people, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and young people in rural and regional areas in the LGBTQIA+ community.

“We are thrilled that 11 of the 12 grants will have a presence/impact in regional Victoria, with seven funded projects being statewide. These projects have the scope to reach and support LGBTIQA+ young people, no matter who they are or where they are located.”

The HEY Grants, administered by YACVic, in partnership with the Victorian Government, support LGBTIQA+ young people and community organisations to undertake mental health promotion and community engagement activities which support LGBTIQA+ young people.

Over 10 years, HEY Grants have supported over 111 organisations with $1.5million funding to assist LGBTIQ+ young people's mental health and well-being.

HEY Grants are part of the broader HEY initiative, delivered in partnership by YACVic and the Victorian Government to bring together 16 key organisations to collaborate and work together on improving mental health and wellbeing outcomes for young Victorians.

“HEY is playing a critical role in supporting LGBTIQA+ young people and their communities to bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Mr Ryan.

For more information, visit

Media contact: Thomas Feng, YACVic Media and Communications Manager, 0431285275

Derm Ryan, YACVic Rural Manager, who manages the HEY project, is available as spokespeople for interviews.

About Youth Affairs Council Victoria (YACVic)

Youth Affairs Council Victoria (YACVic) is the peak body and leading advocate for young people aged 12–25 and youth workers in Victoria. Our vision is that the rights of young people in Victoria are respected, and they are active, visible and valued in their communities.