Thursday, May 3, 2012

Co-chair soapbox

April was a busy month for Gay Wellington. Our total number of members and new volunteers has hit a record high of 45 people after the recent intake day, so a warm welcome to all the new folk! It’s great to have you on board to help promote the welfare of all those in the Wellington region who identify with the queer communities. We often receive good feedback about the work we do - it's great to make a difference.  For example check out our blog for the feedback we received in April about Newcomers, our coming out group for men.

When the Wellington lesbian couple publicly denounced the discrimination they felt at a public bar last week, homophobia was on the minds of many people in our community. Homophobia isn’t acceptable and it’s Gay Wellington's job to reinforce the validity and acceptability of gayness. As the events unfolded in front of the media we didn’t release a statement as groups like Queer Avengers have done (they did a good job though, well done guys). However we want the community to know that all of the Gay Wellington subgroups and volunteers are here to give personal support to people facing homophobia. That's one of the reasons why the Wellington helpline, School's Out, Tranzform, and the coming out groups for men and women exist!

In future we may become more proactive with the media – that’s something we’ll discuss more as a group. The upcoming planned survey about what the Wellington GLBTI community expects from us will help us plan our future role in the community. If you are willing to help out with the survey project, let us know.

Finally, one of the many highlights of the month was when a group of 18 Gay Wellington volunteers went to That’s So Gay at BATS. Most of us shared a dinner afterwards - a fabulous night out and a good way to socialise with fellow volunteers. Thanks Jo and Marc for putting time aside to make these social events happen.  And thanks to everyone who worked on the production of That's So Gay - it was brilliant!

If you're reading this and you'd like to join our group of diverse volunteers, don't hesitate to call helpline on 473 7878 or email us at

Stu & Kura