Here-turi-kōkā / August 2016

Our Here-turi-kōkā update – all items collected in one handy page!

Dyke Diary

Ngā pitopito kōrero, news

Local body elections

Crowdfunding queer and trans resources
Researchers seeking interviewees
Tackling institutional racism
Out&About@Massey Albany
Auckland’s Questioning group
He mana, he wahine
aLBa – active out there
GALS and GLOW in Hamilton
Hamilton Pride Week
New co-ordinator for Deco Divas

Local body elections

We begin our coverage of queer female candidates for the local body elections in October with some of the Living Wage campaign’s meetings, and interviews with Denise Yates in Auckland and Eileen Brown in Wellington. If you know of any lesbians or queer female candidates in your area, please email us on

Living Wage local body meetings

Living wage bannerThe national Living Wage campaign is holding a round of people’s forums and election meetings before the local body elections on October 8. The campaign is a coalition of unions, faith and community groups working to implement the hourly wage that workers need to pay for necessities and to participate as active citizens. This is re-calculated every year; in 2016 it is $19.80/hr, $4.55 more than the legal minimum wage.

The Auckland network will call on candidates to support a Living Wage for directly employed staff at Auckland Council and its organisations, as well as for regular workers for council contractors; extended train timetables and a review of night and weekend transport to meet workers’ needs; and a housing Warrant of Fitness scheme and interest free loans to retrofit damp and leaky homes.

LivingWageElectionMeetingAkAuckland election forums will be held on the evenings of Thursday August 18 in West Auckland, and Thursday September 1 in central Auckland. To be part of the team organising these events, email

At the Wellington City Mayoral candidates’ forum, Living Wage will also call on candidates to commit to paying a living wage to workers and regular council contractors; it will be held on Thursday September 1 in Wellington city. Similar forums for council candidates will be held in the Hutt City Council area on Thursday September 8, and Porirua City Council area on Thursday September 15. See Dyke Diary for details. JR

Denise Yates, Waitakere Ranges Local Board

Future West groupDenise is Pākehā and an experienced local body politician, with 12 years’ experience on local boards under the former Waitakere City Council and the Auckland Council, including terms as chair. She has also been a member of the Auckland Conservation Board for nine years and a chair for six, and is on the board of the non-profit EcoMatters Environment Trust. She is pictured in orange, with the other Future West candidates, which includes three Labour Party members, one independent and two Green members.  All are current board members, and all stood on the same ticket in the last election. Councillor and feminist Sandra Coney is on the right.

The Waitakere Ranges Local Board (WRLB) covers the Waitakere Ranges to the west of Auckland, including coastal villages like Huia, Whatipu and Piha, and urban areas ranging from Glen Eden, housing many Pacific and migrant communities and people on low incomes, and the expensive suburb of Titirangi.

Denise says that the balance between the environment and people is a major issue this election. “The board spends a lot of money on weed management – what about the people, especially youth?” The area needs more community-based after-school activities, and opportunities for local jobs, she says.

“A huge subdivision is being built in Swanson, with over 1,000 houses, and other smaller ones of up to 50, so we could have several thousand new houses over the next few years. Transport will be an issue, and there is not enough green space or parkland. The biggest difficulty is that the amount of money the council gives the board is based on population, which is very small for such a large area. It’s nowhere near enough. We want to provide sports fields, parks and park ‘n ride spaces for the new developments, but until the people arrive they don’t come into the funding calculation.”

LB DY & Janet ClewsDenise was the board chair in the first term of the new council, and worked on environmental issues, art, cultural and community facilities, events and libraries. “We re-established Art on the Beach, Open Studios Waitakere; Te Uru, the new council-run gallery that replaced Lopdell House has given focus and opportunity to Westie artists.” She is pictured, right, with Janet Clews outside Lopdell House before the renovations.

“We’ve established new regular events, including the Kauri Karnival from March to April. It’s an iconic species here, and an opportunity for the community to have fun with kids’ activities, music and performances. We’ve improved the relationship with Hoani Waititi Marae; the board has funded movies in parks there in summer, I’m really chuffed about that.”

The board has also helped improve facilities and events at the Glen Eden and Titirangi libraries, which “really involve the community. A whole gang of people go to the Glen Eden library to play chess, and we put on lots of things for families like Rhythm and Rhyme.”

LB Denise YatesDenise has been out as a lesbian for all her years as a board member; she used to talk at meetings of local board chairs about Rainbow issues and helped campaign for a council Rainbow Advisory Panel.

“As a local board, we’ve done well, but people are always looking for change, they might want new blood,” she says. They are asking “why the supercity needed to happen, what difference it has made. Our opponents are saying the supercity was going to save money but it hasn’t”, and questioning the benefit for it. The team is pamphleting the community, attending candidate meetings, using the local media, and Denise will go door-knocking and phoning local households later in the campaign. See the Future West Facebook page.

Jenny Rankine

Eileen Brown, Capital Coast DHB

LB Eileen BrownFirst time candidate Eileen Brown is a Pākehā unionist with a background in nursing, from nurse aid to service manager in mental health, rehabilitation and medical and surgical hospital wards. Capital Coast District Health Board (CCDHB) covers health services in Wellington city, Porirua and up the Kapiti Coast.

Eileen also has governance experience as chair of the Newtown Union Health Service, a primary care service for people on low incomes. “That’s what motivated me to stand,” she says: “How do we manage health equity for people with high and complex needs, for example refugees, Māori and Pasifika peoples, those on low incomes and with multiple health issues?” And she believes it’s important to use existing democratic structures.

OUt@Work logoEileen describes herself as “located in the community, good at representing and advocating for the needs of people” and experienced in working in coalitions and teams. She was a Nurses Union delegate for 20 years, and before that a PSA delegate representing mental health nurses. For the last 10 years, Eileen has worked for the Council of Trade Unions as a senior policy analyst, liaising with the CTU Women’s Council, and with Out@Work, which promotes the role of LGBTI people in union structures as well as dealing with LGBTI issues for union members.

LB Eileen Brown with AKShe is standing as a Labour candidate; her campaign launch, C’mon Eileen, was attended by Annette King, left, Labour Deputy Leader and Health Spokesperon, and Justin Lester, Labour’s candidate for Mayor of Wellington. Eileen hopes to replace retiring Labour CCDHB board member David Choat. “I’m also in contact with the Green candidate as a result of the memorandum of understanding between the two parties. I think standing on a party ticket is a good thing; my accountability is much greater than if I were standing as an independent. Labour’s primary health and NZ health strategies are good documents.”

Eileen strongly supports the role of public health, which she describes as “responding to the needs of populations rather than individuals.” She gives the examples of a suicide prevention project in schools and workplaces; “health education, illness prevention and health promotion, changing behaviour at a systems level. Fighting discrimination against LGBTI people is a public health approach.” She has a public health degree, is a member of the Public Health Association, and believes “public health is very important in responding to significant health problems we face.”

Eileen sees the major issue for CCDHB as funding. “The DHB has a big deficit; it’s been underfunded. A pressure point is mental health – there have been some dreadful issues. Mental health services and the workforce are under enormous pressure, which is a huge concern for people who want care.” It takes months for young people to get seen by mental health services, she says.

Other issues depend on location, she says. “In Porirua it’s about health equity, the needs of children, access to primary care and decent housing. Up the Kapiti coast, where the population is older, there’s more need for hospital services and primary health care where they don’t have to travel.”

Eileen wants to represent communities with particular health needs – “those on low incomes, with mental health needs, people less able to advocate for themselves”. She sees her most important role as asking the questions that concern those people at board level. If she’s elected she’ll pay attention to mental health waiting lists and health equity, and advocate for better health funding. “It’s about the right health services for people, and the right of people to determine their own services.”

She is also “keen to support health workers – nurses, doctors, allied health professionals and carers. It’s an increasingly difficult job with stretched resources. We need a difference in carers’ weekly pay; we need to continue to fight on equal pay. I support a Living Wage, but DHBs haven’t committed to that. That’s a great movement, a great way to increase everyone’s ability to live a decent life.”

LB Eileen & Mynetta EruetiShe says she is campaigning hard, and thinks she has a good chance of being elected. “I make 100 phone calls a week, introducing myself, saying I’m standing as a Labour candidate. I have lots of good discussions.” She is pictured making calls at Fraser House with volunteer Mynetta Erueti.

As well as having good public health and primary care services, she says that at an operational level DHBs need to have “an awareness of cultural diversity”. She hopes to encourage CCDHB to follow the lead of the Auckland DHB in advocating for the needs of people with diverse sexual and gender identities and health needs. “I don’t announce my sexual identity on my leaflet,” she says, “but if people ask, I talk about living with my partner Jane.”

See her Facebook page.

Jenny Rankine

Crowdfunding queer & trans resources

RY ImL GivealittleRainbow Youth has had very positive feedback about the Queer & trans* 101 booklet it distributes in its I’m Local Project, and is most of the way to the $10,000 fundraising target for a reprint.

The project started in 2014, and aims to supply packs of the comic book and two posters free to high schools, medical centres, hospitals, libraries, marae and community centres in rural or isolated areas of Aotearoa. Says Rainbow Youth (RY) Communications and Operations Manager Toni Duder: “We don’t want to stop until every rural community in Aotearoa has access to this kind of information.”

RY has so far delivered 80,000 packs to communities in Northland, the Auckland region, Waikato, Hawkes Bay, the Bay of Plenty and Southland. Toni says that a survey of recipients found that at least 80 percent said they were really popular, and 90 percent said they were highly useful, “which is great feedback”.

Josie Chambers, one of the leaders of Wellington Girls’ College Spectrum queer straight alliance group, wrote that “the pack arrived super quickly and the booklets (and posters!) are absolutely perfect … colourful and informative and I’m super excited to be able to give them out. I really think that they will help us run our club and help others who may be questioning their sexuality … I think resources like this would’ve been really helpful when I was first questioning my own sexuality and I hope I get to help others out in the same way.”

I'mLocalPstr2The crowdfunding campaign aims to raise enough to print another 30,000 booklets and pay for postage. You can donate at the project’s Givealittle page. The booklet and posters are also downloadable on the I’m Local website, which features a regional directory of queer and gender diverse support groups around the country, as well as a growing collection of personal stories by young queer and trans people who grew up in rural areas.

Young queer and trans women who have lived or are living in a small town or rural area and want to share their stories can email Lorren,  JR

Researchers seeking interviewees

Older lesbian-feminist activists, young Chinese queer women and counsellors or therapists who work with them are sought for two research projects.

Rachel Shaw is studying differences between second-wave (1970s-80s) and current activism in lesbian and feminist groups for her Honours degree in Gender Studies at Otago University. She wants to interview second-wave activists around the country by Skype or other online programmes, asking questions about the place of older activists within the movement, and whether current activism fosters or alienates their knowledge. She will also ask about identity construction, and how women’s experience as activists has changed over time. Email Rachel on or phone 027 723 8077 by the end of August.

Szu-Ying (Xavier) Chiang, in the Department of Psychological Medicine at the University of Auckland, is looking for Rainbow (LGBTQI) and questioning Chinese people aged between 16 and 29, as well as nurses, social workers, therapists, counsellors, psychologists and psychiatrists who work with them, for a project about how to improve the quality of therapy and counselling for this population. Therapists will be asked to feedback on a summary of recommendations about therapeutic practice. See the research website, email Szu-Ying on or phone him on (09) 923 1640.

Tackling institutional racism

stirstop logoQueer women will be part of a national symposium about ending institutional racism within public health in Aotearoa on Tuesday September 13. Organiser Heather Came, who identifies as bi, says that rather than describing the problem, “the event is about identifying solutions and opportunities for collective action. Everyone has a contribution to make to end racism.”

Alongside top speakers in the field from Australia, the USA and Aotearoa will be sessions by postgraduate students Mahdis Azarmandi, from Otago University, and lesbian Jenny Rankine from the University of Auckland (and LNA).

The event will be held at Te Mahurehure Marae, 65-73 Premier Ave, Point Chevalier, Auckland, and fees range from $50 to $250 depending on income. See the website and register, or email

Out&About@Massey University Albany

One of the latest university Rainbow groups, Out&About@Massey, is about to celebrate its first birthday. The university’s Rainbow staff and student group was started by a small group of staff and students at the Albany campus on Auckland’s north shore in September 2015.

The group is encouraging the university to work towards Rainbow Tick accreditation, for organisations that complete a diversity and inclusion certification process to show they understand, value and welcome sexual and gender diversity.

Out&About stallFor the first time, Love Your Condom will attend Clubs Day at Albany campus. Massey Pride will host a photo booth and give away colourful rainbow-themed treats. The student group liaises with those from other universities and announces events on its Facebook page.

Out&About describes itself as a group of family, allies and friends, which aims to promote the well-being and inclusion of people of all gender and sexual identities at the university. The group also supported the establishment of the student club, Massey Pride, in April this year.

Out&About ran stalls and an afternoon tea at student orientation this year, above, with the support of Rainbow Youth and EquAsian, an Auckland social group for Rainbow people from Asian backgrounds. Massey University was represented at the 2016 Big Gay Out for the first time, thanks to Auckland University’s student group, UniQ, which generously shared their stall, and Out&About plans to have a greater presence in the 2017 Auckland Pride festivities.

Other events at the Albany campus included Trans* Remembrance Day, Pink Shirt Day, and a guest lecture by former MP and Wellington Mayor, Fran Wilde; read an interview with her. To contact the group, email Debora Lee on

Auckland questioning and coming out group

The only Auckland group for women who are questioning their sexual or gender identity, or coming out, starts at the Auckland Women’s Centre on Tuesday August 9, and women need to register by August 2.

questioning-poster-2016Questioning? and More… is designed to be a confidential, supportive, non-judgemental space to talk, listen and share. The group is directed by participants and previous topics have included:

  • What does same sex attraction mean to you?
  • Identity labels … bi, queer, lesbian, dyke
  • Stereotypes and gender stereotypes
  • Being in an opposite-sex relationship and having same-sex attraction
  • Finding community and dating
  • Being out in society
  • If you want to come out, how to tell family, friends, work colleagues
  • Sex with women
  • Relationships with women
  • You, your children and a new relationship.

Phone Ellie Lim before Tuesday 2 on 09 376 3227 x 1 or email

He mana, he wahine

late-season-09-he-mana-he-wahine-700x467The current series of LATE at the Auckland Museum starts powerfully this month with Dr Ngahuia Te Awekotuku, Māori, women’s and LGBTT rights advocate, on the panel for He mana, he wahine, Tuesday 9.

ngahuia-te-awekotuku-300x300pxNgahuia has published research on culture, gender, and sexuality. She is also known as a writer of fiction, and has published retold stories of women of mana in Māori myth and history.

As always, this event includes performance and an exhibition. Book with tickets, $10 for students and museum members, $20 for adults.

aLBa events

albalogoWant to meet and network with other lesbians? Support the Auckland Women’s Centre? And have some fun at the same time? aLBa offers all this and more with a fundraising quiz night on Saturday October 15 at the Grey Lynn Community Centre from 7.30pm.

The theme is ‘Lesbian icons’. Come on your own ($25) or make up a table of 8 ($160). Food and drinks (including wine and beer) for sale; fantastic raffles! Book direct with aLBa ( or contact Violet on 021 440 788.

Before the quiz night, there are the regular monthly meetings, held on the second Wednesday of the month at 6pm at Garnet Station. On August 10, lesbian author Joanne Drayton talks with Carole Beu of the Women’s Bookshop; and on September 14, the AGM features guest speaker Tilly Lloyd, of Unity Books in  Wellington.

GALS & GLOW sing in Hamilton

Glow singers

Auckland’s Rainbow choir GALS will sing with Hamilton queer women’s choir GLOW in Hamilton on August 6.

The concert title is ‘The full catastrophe’, which has caused a few laughs for new musical director, Nicholas Forbes, and the choir, as this will be his first full concert as musical director. “The songs are about life catastrophes and natural disasters, and our responses,” says GALS co-chair Heather McDowell.

Songs include Bohemian Rhapsody; Landslide by Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac, sung by the GALS women; Send in the clowns; Survivor; an arrangement written after the Christchurch earthquake of Te mea nui, a traditional Māori pepeha; and Kibo, written in response to the Japanese tsunami.

GALS Hamilton concertSays Heather: “GLOW have sung brackets in our Auckland concerts, and were part of the Out & Loud Choral Festival in February, so this is our way of returning the support.”

The concert is in the Link Community Centre, on Te Aroha St, Hamilton, and includes afternoon tea and a raffle. Presold tickets are $15 for people 15+ and $10 for children, or $20 at the door, available from GLOW members or Dashtickets.

Hamilton Pride Week

hamiltonpride2Acknowledging and celebrating the past, present and future, including the 30th anniversary of Homosexual Law Reform, is the theme of Hamilton Pride Week, from September 9 to 17.

A launch party at Meteor Theatre will include body art models painted in the colours of different LGBT+ communities, DJ Graham from Static Bar, a Love Your Condom photo booth, and an exhibition of work by Rainbow artists. Auckland drag performer Miss Ribena will MC street theatre performers and other entertainment. See the Facebook page for event details.

New co-ordinator for Deco Divas

Sky Leigh, the new co-ordinator of Deco Divas, is keen to expand the Hawkes Gay support and social group for lesbians.

Deco DivasWhy is she passionate about the group? “Even though we have fought and won the right to equality and marriage, and society is less dangerous for LGBT, I believe that there is still a desire and a need to have easy ways to meet other people who have similar experiences, and it is natural to feel the need to find one’s tribe.”

She wants the group to continue to be about connections and fun. She will email a questionnaire to the list this month about what types of events members want, and about using different language to describe the group, such as women who love women or lesbians and queer women.

Sky lives with her partner, Rachael, their three teenagers and their elderly dog.  “We spend most of our days like ships in the night, working and managing kids.”

Deco Divas runs monthly Friday drinks at 7pm in different towns and monthly brunches at different locations, with details advised by email. Email Deco Divas on Former co-ordinator Rose says that the email list has grown from just over 30 to more than 130.  JR

Nga wāhine, people

Official honour for lesbian activist

Cissy Rock honoured for lesbian activism

CissyRockAbout 100 people, mostly lesbians, participated in a community afternoon tea in July, acknowledging and appreciating the work Cissy Rock has done for Rainbow communities.

Cissy made a great contribution to our print predecessor, Tamaki Makaurau Lesbian Newsletter, with her well-known enthusiasm and focus on reaching out to the lesbian community and responding to ideas. She designed the ‘What do lesbians think?’ section, coming up with conversational prompts that were a mix of the serious and the lighthearted.

There was a lesbian conference (held in west Auckland, natch) too, that grew, in part, out of newsletter discussions: “I’ve been thinking,” she’d say, “there used to be lots of political/lesbian conferences, and there hasn’t been anything like that for ages. How hard could it be to organise one now?”

CissyRock2The award is for “rendering meritorious service to the Crown and the nation or becoming distinguished by eminence, talents, contributions, or other merits”. In Cissy’s case, it is specifically for “services to the Auckland gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex (GLBTI) communities in both voluntary and paid capacities”.

Cissy’s west Auckland focus (Heroes Out West, for example, and Lowdown) is always present, and received plenty of thanks and acknowledgement (see our photos page). Much of this has been voluntary – unpaid – service to our community. Mention has also been made of her advocacy for lesbian and rainbow communities in her paid work with Auckland council: the 100%OK campaign, the Rainbow Door group, and the Rainbow Communities Advisory Panel.

Speeches were made by family, friends and colleagues; the cake was cut; Cissy was (almost) speechless. A great occasion for everyone.

For the official citation, visit the Honours list webpage.


Te ao pāpāho, media

Sister Anzac returns to Hamilton and Auckland
Lesbians and rugby
Auckland Writers Festival guests

Women in WWI: Sister Anzac returns

SisterAnzacLesbian director Amanda Rees provided a powerful drama with Sister Anzac in 2015.

Set 100 years earlier, it is a moving performance that recognises the contributions and sacrifices made by women – in this case, nurses – in WWI. With themes such as lack of recognition, and battling the military hierarchy to be allowed to participate, 2016 audiences will find much that is familiar.

Hamilton audiences have a choice of two nights (Thursday 18 or Saturday 20 August – the Friday night show is sold out) at the Meteor Theatre; tickets through

Aucklanders have two opportunities: a season at Q Theatre (Tuesday 23 to Sunday 28 August) and ‘promenade’ performances at the Maritime Museum.

The Q Theatre performances start 7pm Tuesday to Thursday, and 8pm Friday and Saturday. Matinees are 2.30pm Saturday and 4pm Sunday. Stay for a post-show forum on Wednesday 24. Tickets from Q Theatre range from $25 (students), $30 (senior), to $40 (adult); concessions may be available .

The Maritime Museum promenade takes an extra 10 minutes, and audience members must be able to move around in and outside, as the actors rove through the venue. Tickets are $50, and the audience is limited to 25 each night.

Lesbians and rugby: Watch Tits on a Bull

Picture2The 2015 International Film Festival included the Rotorua-based 15-minute film, Tits on a Bull, which is now available free online at Vimeo.

Nineteen-year-old Phoenix has to choose between friendship with the male coach and romance with team captain Mel. Real rugby, real women. Enjoy!

Auckland Writers Festival lesbian guests

Auckland Writers Festival videos and audio podcasts provide an opportunity to see and hear guests from recent events – whether you missed the session, or you are keen to see or hear it again.

Lesbians to watch include the Susie Orbach/Jeanette Winterson ‘Creativity and Craziness‘ popup session from 2016, and the Carol Ann Duffy interview with John Campbell from 2015.

Lesbians to listen to include Susie Orbach and Jeanette Winterson on ‘Creativity and Craziness’ and Orbach on ‘Feminist Days’ from 2016, and  Carol Ann Duffy and Renee from 2015.

Follow the page links at the bottom of any page to look for other lesbian links.

Rātaka takatāpui, Dyke Diary

Auckland/Tamaki Makaurau
Waikato/Central North Island
Wellington/Te Whanganui-a-Tara
Nelson area/Whakatū

Auckland / Tamaki Makaurau

Tuesday 2 Rainbow Seminar: LGB Issues in Aged Care Presenting the education resource for aged care services about the needs of LGB older people, with plans for future development. 4pm, Room 505-003, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, Auckland University Grafton campus.

LivingWageBreakfastWednesday 3 Women and the Living Wage Breakfast 7.30-8.45am, Auckland Trades Hall, 157 Great North Rd, Grey Lynn. Join Dr Judy McGregor and Annie Newman for a discussion on why the Living Wage is important to women. Breakfast is provided for a koha – muesli, yoghurt, fruit, crumpets, tea, coffee, juice. RSVP to Cissy Rock:, 021 964884; visit Facebook event page.

Friday 5 Forum on the control of cervical cancer in NZ: Achievements and future prospects, bringing together health practitioners, consumers and policy makers, reviewing the impact of screening, discussing HPV immunisation and testing. Organised by Women’s Health Action, with the Cartwright Collective and the Auckland Women’s Health Council. 9.30am–4.30pm, Potters Park Events Centre, 164 Balmoral Rd, Balmoral. $50-$150, register at Eventbrite, or phone Women’s Health Action on 09 520 5295.

Saturday 6 Mosaic workshop with Tash Norton, register your interest with Tash on 022 405 4585. $10pp. 10am, Charlotte Museum of lesbian culture, 8 Bentinck St, New Lynn, see the Facebook event page.

EquAsianAugustSaturday 6 EquAsian Coffee Group 3pm, for Asians within the rainbow community; friends and family welcome. Socialise and meet like-minded people. First Saturday of the month. For location, email

Sunday 7 Dyke Hike Botanic Gardens. Meet in the Botanic Gardens Information Centre, near the carpark. Grade: Easy (okay for regular walking shoes, not many hills), two hrs. Email, visit or the Facebook page.

late-season-09-he-mana-he-wahine-700x467Tuesday 9 He Mana, He Wahine (LATE at the museum) 6pm. “Delve into the intricacies of feminism in New Zealand and examine the everyday realities of the quest for equality. We’ll talk mana wahine theory, sex and activism.” Panel includes Māori, women’s and LGBT rights advocate Dr Ngahuia Te Awekotuku. Panel, performance and exhibition. $10 students & museum institute members, $20 adults. Book at ticket desks, 306 7048 or online.


Tuesday 9 for 7 weeks, Questioning? and more: a group for women who are questioning their sexual or gender identity, or coming out. A confidential, supportive, non-judgemental space to talk, listen and share, directed by participants. Phone Ellie Lim on 09 376 3227 x 1 or email

albalogoWednesday 10 aLBa meeting 6pm at Garnet Station. Lesbian author Joanne Drayton talks with Carole Beu, Women’s Bookshop, about her life and writing her memoir, and the fascinating story of writing The Search for Anne Perry. $10; free for aLBa members.

GALS Auckland concertSaturday 13 GALS sings The Full Catastrophe with guests The Project 3.30pm and 7.30pm, Michael Park School Auditorium, 55 Amy St, Ellerslie, Auckland. Cash bar and raffles. Seniors & unwaged $15 for matinee only; otherwise presales $25 (age 15+), $10 children; or $30 at the door. Tickets from the Women’s Bookshop, Ponsonby Rd, or matinee website or evening concert website.

LickAucklandAugSaturday 13 lick auckland – Born To Dance! 10pm-3am, Neck of the Woods, 155B Karangahape Rd, central Auckland. Featuring JessB [LIVE] banging down her tracks produced by P-MONEY w/ her own @DJ Hazei (Shannon Roberts) blazing up the stage. $10 before 11pm, $15 after. Visit Facebook event page for links to the Facebook group page and official page.

LB LivingWageWestAkThursday 18 Living Wage People’s Assembly election meeting with West Auckland council candidates, focusing on a living wage, housing and transport. 6.30pm, Hub West, Corban Ave, Henderson South. Email Cissy Rock on or phone 021 964 884.

Thursday 18 – Saturday 20 The Dr of Oz The annual Auckland Doctor of OzMedical Revue follows young medical student Dorothy on her journey to the Emerald Ward to get signed off for her first ward-run. But with Virginia the Bad B**ch wreaking havoc with the Yellow Paint Line, will Dorothy make it time? The Med Revue is known for hilarious sketches, graceful dances and eyebrow-raising moments, and all proceeds go to Rainbow Youth. 7.30pm, Skycity Theatre, tickets $25 adults, $20 students/concession, from Ticketek.

Rush17Saturday 20 RUSH Women’s Dance with DJ Anji. 7.30-11.30pm, Ceramco Park centre, 120 Glendale Rd, Glen Eden, $15 pre-bought, $20 at the door, no BYO, small cash bar. Tickets from the Women’s Bookshop, Ponsonby Rd.

Sunday 21 Coffee & Stroll 10am, meet for coffee at Nosh Food Market, Glen Innes, 133-135 Apirana Ave, Glen Innes; 10.30am, a pleasant 40-minute or so stroll (sealed path) in Eastview Reserve (cross Apirana Ave, turn left and walk about 100m to entrance) looping back via Line and Eastview Rds, or return through the reserve. Optional extra: a walk in Apirana Reserve (entrance opposite side of Apirana Ave), noting no sealed paths.

AWC comedy fundraiserSunday 21 Feminists are Funny Featuring a line up of women comics including Comedian of the Year Michele A’Court, with vegan treats by Tart Bakery. An Auckland Women’s Centre fundraiser, 7.30-10pm, The Classic Comedy Club, 321 Queen St, Auckland city, $35, tickets from Eventfinda.

SisterAnzacTuesday 23-Sunday 28 Sister Anzac Tuesday-Thursday, 7pm; Friday-Saturday, 8pm; Saturday, 2.30pm; Sunday 4pm. Q Theatre loft. Directed by Amanda Rees, the play is a poignant and personal story of love and bravery, of women who battled the military in order to serve their country as nurses in WWI. Q&A post show Wednesday 24. Tickets $25-40 from Visit Facebook event page.

WinterAtTheMuseumWednesday 24 Winter at the Museum dinner and discussion series: “I don’t like the word ‘cis’, does that make me transphobic?” Charlotte Museum, 8 Bentink St, New Lynn: 6.30pm arrival; 7pm dinner, discussion and dessert (vegetarian meal). Suggested koha $15; wine available, cash only.
Bookings:, 021 964884.

Kings&QueensFriday 26 Return of Kings & Queens 10pm-3am, show starts 10.30pm. Encore Entertainment & Cabaret, 350 Karangahape Rd, Newton. Kings & Queens returns in August and will be on every 2 months. We are here to celebrate Drag in all its glory. $10. Visit Facebook event page.

GirlTalkPoetrySaturday 27 National Poetry Day wrap up – Girl Talk launch 4pm doors open, 4.30pm event starts; One2One cafe, 121 Ponsonby Rd. Check out some fierce and fabulous female and LGBTQI+ poets, or grab the mic and wow the crowd with your own words. All genders welcome on the open mic and in the audience. $10/$8 student or performer; a portion of the door charge goes to the Auckland Women’s Centre. Families welcome. Girl Talk Auckland is a monthly poetry and music event; a safe, inclusive space to celebrate female identifying and LGBTQI+ feature artists and their original work and raise money for refugee causes.

Sunday 28 Fifth Season LGBT gardening group meets outside the gates of Knight’s Nursery, one of the largest NZ wholesale plant nurseries, specialising in flowering pot plants and cut flower chrysanthemums. 2pm, 297 Albany Highway, Albany, followed by afternoon tea at Caffe e Cucina, 265 Albany Highway. Contact Wendy Wilson on 027 548 3510 or

Wednesday 31 Rainbow Women’s Social Night Showing a DVD of Liz in September, 7-9.30pm, Auckland Women’s Centre, 4 Warnock St, Westmere. Phone Ellie Lim 376 3227 or email

SisterAnzacWednesday 31-Saturday 3 September; Wednesday 7-Saturday 10 September Sister Anzac 7pm. Promenade performance, Maritime Museum, Viaduct Harbour. Directed by Amanda Rees, the play is a poignant and personal story of love and bravery, of women who battled the military in order to serve their country as nurses in WWI. Tickets $50 from

Waikato/Central North Island

Monday 1 The Big Qs A relaxed and confidential group for people exploring sexuality and gender starts today. Meet other people on the same journey in a safe and fun space. 7-9pm for 6 weeks, phone WaQuY on 07 839 9039 to register or email

Friday 5 Daughters of Ally at The Cook, 7 Cook St, Hamilton. Join the Lesbian Social Group downstairs table from 6.30pm for dinner or drinks before the show, which starts around 8pm. Visit the Facebook event page for details.

GALS Hamilton concertSaturday 6 GALS sings The Full Catastrophe with guest choir GLOW 2.30pm, Link Community Centre, Te Aroha St, Hamilton. Afternoon tea and raffle. Presales – ages 15+ $15, children $10; or $20 at the door, see the website.

Sunday 14 DecoDivas lunch, 12.30pm, Haumoana, southern Hawkes Bay; email for venue details and to RSVP by Tuesday 9 August.

SisterAnzacThursday 18, Saturday 20 Sister Anzac 7.30pm, Meteor Theatre, Hamilton. Directed by Amanda Rees, the play is a poignant and personal story of love and bravery, of women who battled the military in order to serve their country as nurses in WWI. Tickets $25 from (Note, Friday 20 performance sold out.)

Friday 26 Deco Diva drinks 6.30pm, The Londoner, 246 Gloucester St, Taradale. Those new to the area or the group can email Sky on and meet beforehand.

Wellington / Te Whanganui-a-Tara

Anytime Self-guided LGBTTI walking tour of 24 historic rainbow locations around Wellington’s waterfront in one hour, free. Start at the former site of Carmen’s Balcony on the corner of Harris and Victoria Sts, now the City Library, walk through Civic Square, onto the waterfront, down to Bats Theatre and then back to the Michael Fowler Centre via Courtenay Place. Hear short eyewitness accounts at each location with your smart device using the interactive Google Map, or download the mp3 audio before you set off. See the website.
NZIFFEmily1Thursday 4 A Quiet Passion about the sheltered life of 19th-century US poet Emily Dickinson screens as part of the NZ International Film Festival, 11.15am, Penthouse Cinema. See the website.

Friday 5 Lovesong A film about the close friendship between a young mother and her single friend, part of the NZ International Film Festival, 6.15pm, Light House Petone. See the website.

Rainbow WellingtonSunday 7 August Rainbow Wellington AGM All welcome; only current financial members can speak and vote, but you can pay your sub before the meeting starts. 2–3.30pm, Tararua Tramping Club Hall, 4 Moncrieff St, Mt Victoria. Parking  in Elizabeth St, off Kent Tce, refreshments afterwards.

Sunday 7 DANSS same-sex dance classes for lesbian, gay and Rainbow people and friends, no partner necessary. 7pm, Beginners revision, 8pm, Intermediate revision, upstairs, Thistle Hall, corner Cuba & Arthur Sts. Koha/donation. See the website or email or join the Facebook page.

Sunday 14 Lesbian Overlanders walk in Whareroa Farm, Paekakariki. Meet at the carpark at 10.45am (from the south, take the Mackay’s Crossing exit to Queen Elizabeth Park, approximately 3.5km north of Paekakariki, then turn right through the underpass to Whareroa Park; the carpark is by the gate). Or get picked up from Paekakariki station at 10.30am; train leaves Wellington at 9.44am. Arrange with Sigi in advance on if you need a lift. The walk includes a few stream crossings; bring lunch. Coffee afterwards at our favourite café in Paekakariki. Text trip leaders only on the day – Karin 027 912 6396 and Sigi 027 358 3252. Email if you want to car pool from Lower Hutt.

WomensDebateWednesday 17 Women’s debate: More women in Parliament 5.30pm refreshments, 6pm debate. Royal Society, 11 Turnbull St, Thorndon.Come and hear MPs from the key political parties debate how we can increase the representation of women in Parliament. Koha entry to help cover costs. Visit Facebook event page for details.

Friday 19 Kapiti lesbian drinks and dinner Finn’s pub, Paekakariki. Phone Finns on 04 292 8081 and add your name to Sally’s table if you intend staying for dinner.

Nelson area/Whakatū

The Lesbian Connection (TLC) sends a monthly email of events in the area, Nelson and Motueka in particular. Contact them at to go on the mailing list or for more details of any events.

Wednesday 3 Nelson Games night, from 5.30pm, Prince Albert Hotel, 113 Nile St, Nelson.

Sunday 7 Nelson brunch/lunch, 11am, Sinful Coffee, 276 Queen St, Richmond.

Wednesday 10 Nelson Pool night, from 5.30pm, Shark Club, 132 Bridge St, Nelson.

Sunday 14 Nelson Walking group 10.30am, all welcome, including dogs.

Wednesday 17 Nelson Games night, from 5.30pm, Prince Albert Hotel, 113 Nile St, Nelson.

Wednesday 24 Nelson Pool night, from 5.30pm, Shark Club, 132 Bridge St, Nelson.

Sunday 28 Motueka brunch/lunch, 11am, T.O.A.D Hall Store and Cafe, 502 High St, Motueka.

Wednesday 31 Nelson Games night, from 5.30pm, Prince Albert Hotel, 113 Nile St, Nelson.


The Christchurch Women’s Centre keeps a diary of events in Christchurch and elsewhere on their Lesbian Support page. Check events on the  Christchurch LGBT social events page.

Thursday 28 July-Sunday 14 August NZ International Film Festival Look out for The Handmaiden, a Korean adaptation of Sarah Waters’ lesbian novel Fingersmith.


Thursday 4-Sunday 21 NZ International Film Festival Look out for The Handmaiden, a Korean adaptation of Sarah Waters’ lesbian novel Fingersmith.

OUSATeaPartyWednesday 10 Queerest Tea Party 12noon-2pm, Otago University Students Association, celebrating sex, gender, and sexuality diversity on campus. Anyone, queer or queer friendly, is welcome: free hot beverages, cakes and slices; cup cake decorating competition; contribute to a collaborative weaving project marking 30 years since Homosexual Law Reform. Contact or visit OUSA events.


GSWQT logoSaturday 27-Saturday September 3 Gay Ski Week QT with four parties, a Queer Quiz night, comedy night, Caluzzi Queens Cabaret and karaoke night; organised by Sally Whitewoods. See website.

News, pix and profiles about lesbians and queer women in Aotearoa/New Zealand

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