Matthew Mitcham and his partner Luke Rutherford are planning a European wedding for the new year.
“We’ll be getting married in the south of Belgium, in the French-speaking part, in late February,” the Olympic gold medalist and stage performer told QNews.com.au.
“We gave ourselves about seven months to plan the wedding. We’re doing it in another country just to add a bit of extra stress!
“I’m doing part of the ceremony in another language just to shake things up a little bit.
“We found this fabulous chateau in Belgium that can accomodate 35 people.
“We felt like this might be the only opportunity to blend our families and have our families come together.”
Matthew and Luke Rutherford met each other through mutual friends in Sydney.
“We didn’t really make an impression on each other at first. It was kind of a slow burn relationship,” he said.
The couple traveled around Australia together last summer.
Then when Luke’s visa ran out earlier this year, the couple made the decision to move to London together in March.
Matthew announced on Instagram in June that Luke had proposed.
“He got down on both knees, I said yes, and now we’re engaged,” Matthew wrote on Instagram.
He added: “I’ve been with this funny, passionate, energetic, caring, fun-loving, handsome man for six months.
“Thanks for being the Ricky Ricardo to my Lucy.”
Luke wrote on his Instagram: “I’m the luckiest man in the world.”
View this post on Instagram
Matthew Mitcham backing Sydney Mardi Gras’ grants program
This month, Matthew Mitcham has thrown his support behind Sydney Mardi Gras and ANZ’s 2019 Community Grants program.
The national initiative is offering grants of up to $10,000 to LGBTIQ+ not-for-profit community organisations, charities and individuals.
Matthew said when he was a teenager, Brisbane’s Open Doors Youth Service was a huge help to him.
“When I was in high school I didn’t really know many gay people. I knew of others at my school but none of us really hung out,” he said.
“I didn’t have any queer peers until I heard through a friend of a friend about Open Doors, a youth drop-in centre in Brisbane.
“One afternoon I went along and I met a whole bunch of other queer teenagers. It was at Open Doors where I found my first tribe.
“It’s where I first started to not only become comfortable with my sexuality, but proud of my sexuality.”
The grants program offers funding for a wide range of purposes including education and training, creation, arts and culture, and community development.
Applications are open until October 6, with successful applicants announced on October 28.
For more details and to apply, visit the website here.
For the latest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) news in Australia, visit qnews.com.au. Check out our latest magazines or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.