This Sunday afternoon at Rupert Street there’s going to be some hot boys in sexy underwear, a hilarious comedian and it’s all for a good cause. The annual Rupert Street Fashion Fundraiser is this year shaking its moneymaker for the charity RUComingOut. We asked Wayne Dhesi, founder of RUComingOut, to explain what the charity does, host Stephen Bailey why he’s there, and Brian from the bar to tell us what to expect on the night.
Brian Hoolichan – Rupert Street Bar
Hi Brian, why have you chosen RUComingOut as the Rupert Street charity this year?
The Fashion Fundraiser has become an annual event at Rupert Street and as we are in our fourth year I wanted to change the charity we are supporting. I chose RUComingOut because the work Wayne Dhesi does is fantastic, focusing on an issues that everyone can relate to.
What time is the fundraiser on Sunday?
The fundraiser begins at 2pm and is hosted by one of my favourite comedians Stephen Bailey, who is very funny.
What have you got planned for the event?
We have some seriously sexy underwear and fetish gear this year donated by Andrew Christian and Clonezone, which after being modelled by our boys will then be auctioned straight off of them! We have some great prizes which will also be auctioned and we are holding a raffle to raise funds for RUComingOut.
How can people donate or help with the fundraiser on the day?
Coming down to support the event on the day and buying some raffle tickets or bidding on your favourite items will really help to make a difference. We have had terrific support from local businesses donating prizes and even our regular customer Charlie donating his time to model for us. If anyone would like to donate a prize or their time to model them please get in touch.
What else is coming up at Rupert Street?
We now have DJs playing Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights with some great nights coming every weekend in December.
Stephen Bailey – Host
‘I am so thrilled to be coming out at Rupert Street and hosting for RUComingOut – mainly because Wayne said if I agreed to play host we could marry in the new year, and isn’t that why we fought for same-sex marriage? In all seriousness, it’s combining three of my favourite things: an excellent cause, boys with their six packs on display and vodka at Rupert Street. Also, if I do a good job, hopefully all the gays will follow me from there to see my new show at the Phoenix Artist Club on 14 November. I’ve also been asked to decide on the playlist for the evening but I think they’re cutting me off there as apparently Lea Michele’s Places album is not dancey enough.’
Get details of Stephen’s upcoming tour at stephenbaileycomedy.co.uk
RUComingOut was set up (and is still run) by Wayne Dhesi in March 2012 while he was a Youth Worker for the National Health Service. He noticed a gap in support for closeted people and had an idea that gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans people who had come out and were now content and happy could share their experiences with those who were struggling with coming out now.
People from all over the world have written their own personal accounts of coming out and are shared on the website. The purpose of the charity is not to encourage people to come out before they are ready, or to make them feel under any pressure to do things in a particular way; it is simply a source of first hand accounts from people who have already been through, and are still going through, the process themselves.