Does it sometimes feel like all the older people are straight, and all the Rainbow folks are young? It’s time to hear from some of the less visible people in Takatāpui and Rainbow communities.


Informed by community conversations, Elder Voices is a project to find about life for Takatāpui and Rainbow Elders, developed by Hohou Te Rongo Kahukura and Rainbow Hub Waikato. It’s a chance for older lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual or intersex people – “out” or not – to talk about what they need.

We are deeply grateful to everyone who passed on the Elder Voices survey, or hosted us to talk about the project, either online or in person.  You have helped us reach older people all over Aotearoa.

We were thrilled to receive nearly 450 responses to our community survey, and now we are holding interviews with Elders in person. Together, the survey and interview responses will help us highlight gaps in strategies, services and policies for older Takatāpui and Rainbow New Zealanders. This project seeks to honor our Elders, as people who have survived huge social and legal changes.

We will have a report and some audio clips from our interviews available later in 2023. Watch this space!

The experiences of Takatāpui and Rainbow Elders matter to all of us. They are not only older people, they are whānau.

Who are we?  
The research team includes Tim Bennett, Oriana Brown, Dr Catherine Cook, Caya Divakalala, Bex Fraser, Dr Huhana Hickey, Lexie Matheson, Kathleen Miller and Lee Page. Sandra Dickson is the lead researcher and can be reached here.

Our specialist social worker, Kathleen Miller, can be reached here.

Additional resources
If you want to talk to someone, these confidential, free national helplines are available: 

OutLine is a Rainbow mental health organisation providing support services across Aotearoa. Free call 0800 688 5463 between 6pm-9pm for support.

Whakarongorau Aotearoa is a helpline for older people who may be experiencing abuse, neglect or exploitation. They offer 24-hour support and advice on 0800 32 668 65.

Body Positive have produced an HIV & Advanced Care Planning resource to help people plan the health care they want or don’t want, with the important people in their life.

Listen here: I’m Just Older Darling is a series of conversations about what it means to be an Elder in our communities, produced by Same Same But Black.