Saturday, March 24, 2012

Donate to Gay Wellington this week and get a tax break

Hi everyone

We don't often ask the community to donate to the Wellington Gay Welfare Group. But this year our funding income is down and there's so much we want to do!

The next week up to Saturday 31 March is the ideal time to donate to us. Because we're a registered charity, any donations made to the group qualifies for a donation tax credit. If you donate before 31 March, which is the end of the tax year, you'll be able to claim 1/3rd back from IRD as soon as May 2012.

We put a lot of effort into keeping our website up-to-date so people know who we are, what we're doing and what's happening. Check it out to see what a difference we're making to the GLBTI community in the Wellington region.

Funders like the Wellington City Council and Lotteries are great supporters of our group, but they prefer to help fund salary costs for our School's Out activities. That means we struggle to pay for the basics in other areas. A $20 donation will pay our telephone bill for 1 week. $50 will pay for a week's worth of advertising so people can find out about us. $100 will help pay for a month's worth of travel so our youth facilitators can help in the Kapiti Coast and the Hutt.

You can donate directly into our bank account. Click on this link to find out how to do it and let us know if you want a receipt to claim back the donation tax credit from IRD.

Thanks for reading this blog. Any financial support you can provide is really appreciated. And don't forget that if you want to help but you don't have any money, you can still donate your time. Our next volunteer intake day will be on Saturday 21 April. Call us at helpline on 473 7878 or email us at to find out more.

Many thanks

Stu & Kura
Co-Chairs, Wellington Gay Welfare Group

PS You can also help us by forwarding the link to this blog to your friends who you think may be interested in supporting WGWG. Much of our work is by word-of-mouth so if everyone forwarded this on to several friends we'd be very grateful :-)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Join Gay Wellington! Next intake: 21 April 2012

If you'd like to do something for the community, now's the time to join Gay Wellington. We're not just a facebook group, we also run the Wellington Gay & Lesbian Helpline, coming out groups for men and women, School's Out, a grants committee for men with HIV/AIDS, we support Tranzform and we get involved with a lot of other things as well.

If you do decide to join you'll be part of a group of over 40 other volunteers, all working under the umbrella of a registered charity that started in Wellington back in 1979.

It doesn't cost anything to become a member apart from your time. And you're guaranteed to learn something and meet new people. We have monthly guest speakers (Agenda and the queer network for union members were the two most recent) and are planning a series of social events during the year.

If you are interested we'd usually catch up over coffee first to give you a better overview of the group and invite you to an intake/training day. The next one will be on Saturday 21 April from 9.30-4.00pm. Give us a call at helpline on 473 7878 or email us at You can find out more on our website.

Out@PSA & Out@work talks to Gay Wellington

On the third Tuesday of every month from 6pm-7pm we invite guest speakers along to talk to Gay Wellington members. Folk in the wider GLBTI community are also welcome to sit in.

Yesterday our guests were Sarah and Eileen from the PSA union and the NZ Council of Trade Unions. We had about 20 people in the audience, which was a fabulous turn-out.

Sarah told us about Out@PSA, a network for PSA members who identify as gay, lesbian, intersex, transgender, takataapui, fa'afafine or bisexual.

Eileen talked about the CTU network called Out@Work. This group was set up in 2000 as the Council of Trade Union's network for lesbian, gay, takataapui, bisexual, intersex, transgender and fa'afafine union members.

We learnt how unions will be passionate advocates for GLBTI issues. The role of both organisations is to promote respectful, diverse, and inclusive workplaces.

Eileen also mentioned some very useful information provided by the Human Rights Commission. For example, the "A to Z for employers and employees: pre employment guidelines". This publication offers a lot of good advice and answers questions such as 'What are the situations where the sexual orientation of a job applicant can be taken into account?'

A big thanks to Sarah and Eileen for taking the time out to talk to us :-)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Greetings from Ashleigh, a new volunteer

[GW] Welcome Ashleigh! So let's start with an easy question. What have you been doing for the last 100 years?

[A] Right, I've been wandering around this earth like the Isralites in the desert, finding a home. 40 years of that, I landed back in Wellington for work, a social life and, with a little surprise, a new girlfriend. I'll always be a mainlander at heart though, but Wellington is a great place to be for all of the above.

[GW] Nice one, so what made you join Gay Wellington?

[A] I've joined Gay Wellington cos it’s a great place to meet new people / contacts, and it presents an opportunity to do some financial type things. This fits with my new studies, where, when I grow up, I aspire to be a money laundering accountant...I mean a clean upstanding citizen who plays with other peoples' money for a living.

[GW] What’s your favourite saying?

[A] Life's short, eat dessert first.

[GW] Finally, what music is played in your house/car?

[A] Music depends on the mood, sometimes it's Anne Murray in the car,
other times, Leanne Rimes or Guns and Roses, Lady Gaga or Pink
sometimes make a cameo, but my music heart never truly progressed
past the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s.

At Gay Wellington we're always keen to have new volunteers. Give us a call at helpline on 473 7878 or send us an email at if you're interested in joining Ashleigh and the team.

Agenda NZ talks to Gay Wellington

Our February training guest was Natalie Shearer from Agenda NZ.

Natalie gave a very thought-provoking presentation on the issues facing the transgender community. Personal stories and experiences were shared from within the group. This increased our awareness and understanding of historical and current challenges. We also learnt how things we take for granted, like getting a birth certificate or presenting our drivers licence to employers, may not be so easy for trans people.

Natalie also highlighted the various support groups she works with in the community. It was a great presentation that would be beneficial for many organisations who want to make Wellington an inclusive, better place.

If you want to know more about Agenda, check out this link.

Our March training guest on Tuesday 20th March at 6pm will be the PSA. If you'd like to come along and listen, give us a call at helpline - we're happy to have more people in the audience.

Reports from Helpline, the Lesbian Drop-In & School's Out


We were available for 16 days in February, took 17 calls (5 male, 10 female) and spoke for 6hrs 30 minutes. The main themes were relationships coming out and information on community links.

Lesbian Drop-In

Kia ora All. At the Lesbian Drop-In this week we had visitors from France, Canada and Mexico. It’s great to hear about people’s experiences arriving in Wellington and their settling process. We continue to meet at the Embassy on Thursdays - the first one of the month. The next meeting will be April 5th. Peace Jo

School’s Out

School’s Out were recently invited by the Governor General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae and Lady Janine Mateparae, to a Waitangi Day reception at Government house. Some of our youth, plus me, got all tidied up and in our best finery for the occasion. Everyone loved Skye’s hair. It was a on a beautiful Wellington day and we had a great time and chatted to lots of other youth leaders from high schools from all round the area. I had a chat about School’s Out to my old school principal, and it was a great opportunity to talk about some of the great things we’re doing in the Kapiti area as well. We felt very proud to be invited to this super flash event! - George

This month's Gay Wellington Co-Chair Update

February was a blur for me because my 84 year old mother passed away. The funeral last week went well and over 120 people came, many from the farming district where I grew up. It was one of those rare occasions where the past catches up with the present and by the end of the service, after the celebrant had introduced me and my partner Stephen, everyone knew that mum had a gay son. Mum would have chuckled at the look on some people’s faces, but they were all great about it. It just goes to show that we never stop coming out! And it shows how times have changed for the better.


Welcome back Stu, our heartfelt thoughts were with you during this sad time. Kura