Helen Keller once said that 'alone we can do so little, together we can do so much'. Last October myself and a group of lads competed in a competition to become the next Mr Gay Ireland. And from the get go, I think I can speak on behalf of us all, we knew who we wanted to represent us on both a national and international stage. Over the past few months, Robbie Lawlor, Mr Gay Ireland 2014, has fought rigorously to unite the LGBT community in Ireland and prove that Helen Keller spoke the truth. Before he jets off to Austria in a few days to compete in Mr Gay Europe, we sat down, with a few glasses of wine, to have a chat.
It's funny because if you were completely oblivious to the competition you would think a guy of Robbie's age would only compete in such a thing to receive a well credited title and that would be it. It hasn't turned out to be the case with the current title holder. At 23 he is working two jobs, both of which are to be such to benefit his future. During the week he helps people who have intellectual disabilities and at the weekends he works in retail so he can further his education in gender equality, sexual health education and promotion.
As we continued in conversation he went on to explain that he has given countless sexual health talks throughout the country and helped loads of charities promote sexual health throughout nightclubs. And given the picture of the over-sized t-shirt he had to wear, I don't know how he did it. Don't worry, I told him the size of the top was sartorial suicide. He has also met a vast amount of figure heads in the gay community, from here and abroad, which I found quite impressive.
I found it incredible that such a young guy has so much passion for the gay community and has such a need to help others whether they are suffering from a disability, HIV or just need to talk. It is a trait that earned him the Mr Gay Ireland title and from our conversation he has showed that he represents all the values of the Mr Gay Europe title, if not more. Each community needs someone to look up to and in some aspects, someone to lead them. In this case I have no doubt it is Robbie. He is a guy that will always lend a listening ear, work his ass off for a cause and show you the respect you deserve. He is going to continue to go from strength to strength as a figure head in the Irish LGBT community and I have no doubt that he will make people sit up and listen in Austria. However, he cant do it on his own. We can all do our bit to help him keep the Mr Gay Europe crown in Ireland. If you could all take two seconds to follow the link below and vote for Ireland. Oh, and good luck Robbie, we are all rooting for you. We all adore you and your courage gives so much promise to everyone around you.
Vote For Ireland Here: http://www.mrgayeurope.com/vote/