Peer Support Groups
RainbowYOUTH run peer support groups for queer and gender diverse youth across Auckland, Northland and Bay of Plenty. Our groups are a safe space for queer and gender diverse young people to connect with others while relaxing in a friendly, supportive and inclusive environment. Each of our groups are youth-led and hosted by trained facilitators.
What to Expect
What’s it like there?
Totally chill! Usually our groups start off with an ice breaker and then break off into conversations or activities. It’s completely up to you how you want to spend your time at the group, some people prefer to chill out with a cuppa and others prefer to do an activity, and that’s ok!
All of our groups are run by our trained facilitators, so if you have any questions or need a bit of support, they’re the best folks to talk to. If you ever feel uncomfortable or have any concerns at a group, let the facilitator know and they’ll do their best to settle the situation.
First time visiting?
Coming to a RainbowYOUTH group for the first time can be pretty nerve racking and building the courage to come along can sometimes take a wee while. All of our groups strive to be welcoming environments and chances are you won’t be the only new person to the space, and we’ve all been there! Our facilitators will recognise any new faces to the group and will keep you under their wing.
Who can come?
Most of our groups are open to queer and gender diverse youth between 13 and 27, but some of them are identity or age specific. Check their details below or on Facebook, to double check. Our groups aren’t just for “out” queer and gender diverse youth too – if you’re unsure about your identity, this is just as much your space as it is ours!
We run groups all across Aotearoa, so there’s not really one way of getting there. Posting a question to the Facebook group can be a helpful way of figuring out public transport options! If you are struggling to find a way to get to group, let our facilitators know as they might be able to recommend something for you.
A huge and valid concern for visiting a group is your safety, and that’s our top priority! Our groups are one of a few safe-spaces for queer and gender diverse young people in Aotearoa. That’s why we’ve put in a few measures to keep everyone safe:
- Facilitators are there to make sure our space and people are safe
- Strict rules ensuring our spaces are drug, smoke and alcohol free
- Strict policies ensuring all facilitators, volunteers and staff comply with child safety laws and checks
Access & Inclusion
We strive to make RainbowYOUTH an inclusive place for absolutely everyone!
- Gender inclusive and affirming: We might ask for your name and pronouns, and all toilets are gender free
- Zero tolerance of racism, homophobia, transphobia, intersexphobia and biphobia
- Respectful of privacy and boundaries: We won’t take a photo without your permission, and we won’t share or publicise your personal information without asking
- Wheelchair accessible entrance and toilet
- Free water, drinks and snacks
Generation Queer (G.Q.)
Generation Queer (GQ) is for anyone under 18 years, who identifies as queer or gender diverse (LGBTIQ+)
We meet fortnightly on Fridays, 6:30pm-8:30pm at the Auckland Drop-in Centre (end of Abbey Street, Auckland Central)
Star* is a social support group open to gender diverse and currently questioning youth, 27 years and under
We meet fortnightly on Sundays, 2:30pm-4:30pm at the Auckland Drop-in Centre (end of Abbey Street, Auckland Central)
Star* has a secret Facebook group so that non-members cannot see who is in it. If you want to join the Facebook group, please contact [email protected]
I.D. is for anyone between the ages of 18 – 27 who identifies as queer or gender diverse (LGBTIQ+)
We meet fortnightly on Sundays, 5.30pm – 7pm at the Auckland Drop-in Centre (end of Abbey Street, Auckland Central)
QWest is for anyone between the ages of 18 – 27 who identifies as queer or gender diverse (LGBTIQ+)
We meet fortnightly on Fridays, 6pm – 8pm at Community Waitakere, 8 Ratanui Street, Henderson
Rainbow Northland is a peer-support group based in Whangarei for anyone 27 years and under, who identifies as queer or gender diverse (LGBTIQ+)
We meet fortnightly on Thursdays, 4-5pm at ONEONESIX (116 Bank St, Whangarei 0110)
Bay of Plenty
TaurangaPryde is a peer-support group based in Tauranga for anyone under 27 years old, who identifies as queer or gender diverse (LGBTIQ+).
We meet Wednesdays, 5pm-7pm at the Tauranga Drop-in Centre (Complex 1, 17th Avenue, Historic Village, Tauranga).
Gender, Sexuality & Allies (GSA) is a peer-support group based in Kawerau for people under the age of 27 years, who identify as gender and/or sexuality diverse, as well as allies and young people who are navigating their identity
We meet Thursdays, 4pm-6pm at Kawerau Konnect (369 River Road, Kawerau 3127)
Rainbow Vegas is a peer-support group based in Rotorua for anyone under 27 years old, who identifies as queer or gender diverse (LGBTIQ+)
We meet fortnightly on Thursdays, 4:30pm-5:30pm at Rotovegas Youth Health (6 Te Ngae Road, Victoria, Rotorua 3010)
Rural Rainbow is for anyone aged 13 – 27 based in (or visiting!) New Plymouth. Rural Rainbow is open to all gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, transgender, takatapui, fa’afafine or otherwise non-straight/non-cis identifying youth.
We meet fortnightly on Thursdays, 3.30pm – 5pm at YMCA Youth Hub, 99 Liardet Street, New Plymouth