Supporting the health and wellbeing of the local rainbow community
Our sexual and gender identity goes to the heart of who we are as people. Some of us – especially younger people – can at times find it hard figuring out how we identify.
No one really knows yet what determines a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. Some people find it easy to accept, and be accepted for, who they are. Others can find it more of a struggle, especially if our whānau and friends don’t support us.
Feeling comfortable and confident about our sexual and gender identity is crucial to good health and wellbeing. Identifying as LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersexed and Asexual) may make you more prone to being labelled, made fun of or abused. It’s a sad fact that people who seem to be different to the ‘norm’ often face discrimination and bullying.
Resources and support services are available to help you explore issues around gender and sexual identity.
Te Mana Ora | Community and Public Health assists the LGBTQIA+ community by supporting the Pride Committee.
Updated Pink Pages Directory is now available
The Pink Pages is a Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Intersex and Transgender Directory of Queer and Queer Friendly Services in Ōtautahi Christchurch.
This is now an online downloadable resource – rather than a website.
Please complete the application form below if you would like to add a new listing to the Pink Pages.
Free online course: Supporting Transgender People
Gender Minorities Aotearoa is offering a free online course called Supporting Transgender People. This course is designed to increase your knowledge of issues affecting transgender people in Aotearoa, and to build your confidence in speaking about these issues and supporting transgender people. It is an introductory course and is suitable for people with any level of knowledge on transgender issues.
The course takes 2 to 3 hours to complete, and is broken into three sessions. You can stop at any time and continue later by logging in again. There are links to further reading at the end of some sections – these are optional and are not included in the time allocation.
Content warning: This course discusses stigma, discrimination, and violence experienced by transgender and intersex people. Some content may be distressing.
All Right?: Taking pride in who we are
Research from the All Right? campaign in early 2020 found that the Christchurch rainbow community is optimistic overall and many things are getting better. However many LGBTQIA+ people still face significant obstacles to their wellbeing.
The rainbow community contributes so much to our city – injecting vibrancy, excitement and compassion. Unfortunately, discrimination, bullying, privacy violations and things as simple as incorrect assumptions are holding us back, and our city is poorer for it.
The More than All Right? campaign is designed to celebrate and give greater visibility to our local rainbow community. It shines the light on local members of our rainbow community from all walks of life.
Kiwi research on trans and non-binary-inclusive maternity care released
The findings of a two-year Otago Polytechnic | Te Pūkenga-led research project on trans and non-binary-inclusive maternity care was released in July 2023.
“Transgender, non-binary and takatāpui people experience significant health disparities compared to the general population,” says lead researcher Dr George Parker (they/them).
“Before this project, there was limited research on the experiences of trans and non-binary people in maternity services. Now we have a body of work that describes how trans, non-binary and takatāpui people and whānau experience New Zealand’s maternity system”.
The first phase of the research involved qualitative interviews with 20 trans whānau who were on their whānau-building journey from trying to conceive through to the early years of parenting. The second phase was an anonymous online nationwide survey of perinatal healthcare providers.
The result of both phases is the completion of a set of innovative trans-inclusive practice guidelines aimed to help the perinatal sector. The guidelines address a range of issues, including gender-inclusive language, gender-inclusive bathrooms and other facilities, data systems that capture gender identity, and a range of measures that seek a more equitable and inclusive perinatal care service.
“The guidelines are unique in that they are informed by a Te Ao Māori model of wellbeing – Te Whāre Takatāpui,” Dr Parker notes.
Research reports on human rights, wellbeing and health
Support materials for parents and schools
For further information, contact:
Ph: +64 3 364 1777
Support services for LGBTQIA+ community
0800 OUTLINE (0800 688 463)
0800 111 757
Mana Tipua Takatāpui (Instagram) – a youth group in Ōtautahi.
Unbreakable Foundation (Facebook) – run exercise classes for the LGBTQIA+ and Takatāpui community in Ōtautahi.
ReWired – a methamphetamine support programme specifically for gay and bisexual men in Christchurch.
LGBT Community Timaru (Facebook).
Support networks for transgender people (HealthInfo).
Information for Health Professionals
Gender Reassignment Health Services for Trans People within New Zealand (Ministry of Health 2011).
Guidelines for gender affirming healthcare for gender diverse and transgender children, young people and adults in Aotearoa, New Zealand (Transgender Health Research Lab at University of Waikato 2018).
Information on Transgender Health including gender-affirming treatments (Community Health Pathways).