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What We Do

About Rainbow Youth

Rainbow Youth is an Auckland-based organisation providing support, information, advocacy and education for queer young people (aged between 13 and 28) and their friends, family and whanau.

In Aotearoa New Zealand, the word “queer” has been reclaimed by young people as a positive term that includes gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, takataapui, fa’afaine, intersex, asexual and queer-identified people in our communities and familes.

At Rainbow Youth we aim to foster a safe, inclusive, accepting, diverse family environment. We are drug-free, smoke-free and alcohol-free.

Our motto

Rainbow Youth’s motto is Know Who You Are, Be Who You Are.

Kevin Haunui and Elizabeth Kerekere from Tiwhanawhana Trust in Wellington have gifted us a version of our motto in te reo Maori: Whaia to ake ngakaunui, i te pono, i te marama. Simply translated, this means: Follow your desires with truth and clarity.

Core services and activities

Drop-in centre

Our drop-in centre in central Auckland provides a safe place for queer youth, their friends and families and members of the community to meet our staff and access information (including our book and DVD library) and support.

Peer social support groups

We run regular get-togethers where youth members can meet people and socialise in a safe environment.

More about Rainbow Youth groups

Partnering with schools and tertiary institutions

We work with schools and tertiary institutions to provide resources and information on sexuality and gender identity. We also have staff members who present diversity workshops for students and/or teachers.

More about Rainbow Youth Education

What we mean when we say queer

A reclaimed word that represents sexuality and gender diversity. We use it to encompass lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, fa'afafine, and takataapui identities, as well as everyone in between and not sure. This word is used by many people, but it is also appreciated that it is not the preferred term for everybody.


What we mean when we say trans*

Rainbow Youth uses the word 'trans*' as an umbrella term for gender-diverse people, including for example; whakawahine, tangata ira tane, FtM, MtF, transsexual, fa'afafine, transgender, whakawahine, transmen, transwomen, akava'ine, leiti, genderqueer and gender-neutral people.