Who is this guide for?
This guide is for anyone who provides mental health support in Aotearoa, including (but not limited to) counsellors, psychologists, psychiatrists, psychotherapists, tohunga (Māori healers), social workers, mental health nurses, and GPs. It will also be helpful for youth workers, group facilitators, and peer supporters.
Why do you need this guide?
Wherever you work in mental health, you work with rainbow people. Rainbow people in New Zealand face a range of complex issues, and mental health professionals don’t always receive specific training about their needs and experiences. You already have the skills to provide great support – this guide is designed to give you information to build on and strengthen those skills.
Who developed this guide?
All the information you’ll find here is based on findings from the Rainbow Mental Health Support Experiences Study and the Out Loud Aotearoa Project. Together, these projects involved interviews and surveys with, and submissions from, more than 1600 rainbow people in Aotearoa. To create this resource, researchers from Victoria University of Wellington’s Youth Wellbeing Study teamed up with RainbowYOUTH, InsideOUT, and Gender Minorities Aotearoa. We also refer to other research studies throughout the guide.