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Welcome to Rainbow Youth. Skip directly to: main content or navigation.


2009 is Rainbow Youth's 20th anniversary.

In 1989 a group of young people established Auckland Lesbian and Gay Youth (ALGY), a support network for queer youth. ALGY was formed as part of the Isherwood Trust (the former Pride Centre) and was funded by the Trust to provide support for queer youth through social group and events. ALGY also started an education programme, running workshops in schools.

In 1995 ALGY became an incorporated society and was renamed Rainbow Youth. That same year Rainbow Youth shifted and started sharing premises with YouthLine in Ponsonby. In 2001, with funding from the Methodist Mission Northern and Child, Youth & Family, Rainbow Youth shifted again, this time to Mt Eden, where we were able to open the first safe space for queer youth in Auckland.

The first national Queer Youth Hui was run in late 2003, organised by OutThere . Forty young people from across Aotearoa came together to connect and share.

In late 2008 Rainbow Youth appointed its first Executive Director, Tom Hamilton. It's Tom's job to manage the Rainbow Youth staff, expand the services provided, and maintain our presence in the queer community. In 2009 Rainbow Youth received a major financial and media boost when Tamati Coffey, the winner of TVNZ's Dancing with the Stars programme, selected us as his charity.

Today, Rainbow Youth is Aotearoa New Zealand's largest queer youth organisation. We are run by youth, for youth, and have a board made up of people under the age of 28. We are a not-for-profit, incorporated society and registered charity.


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.

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