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Welcome to EMPWR

Compassionate, holistic antenatal classes dedicated to the LGBTQIA+ Takatāpui* community

A service informed by and created with the needs of the LGBTQIA+ Takatāpui community at the centre of what we do. A service that our community needs and wants.​

Find out more about antenatal classes in Auckland

New Zealand's first and only LGBTQIA+ antenatal classes

Having a baby is so often steeped in heteronormativity, that it can be a barrier to rainbow families accessing education about pregnancy, birth and parenting. Mainstream antenatal classes are often not an inclusive space for LGBTQIA+ parents. They often split the classes into groups: the 'mums' and the 'dads' . So for people who don't identify as mum or dad or perhaps have two mums in their whānau, what do they do? Which group do they go in? EMPWR's antenatal classes are designed differently; they are grounded in reproductive justice, bodily autonomy and self determination. They are for any parent who wants to experience antenatal education in a new and innovative way.

Don't just take our word for it though, check out what other parents have to say!

"Pregnancy care is centred within a heteronormative rhetoric and now more than ever, our community deserves to feel seen, valid and represented."

This was a highly informative class. Lou and Arlene covered all the basics of a traditional antenatal class as well as many other topics that wouldn't normally be covered. They were extremely responsive and spent a long time answering questions and tailoring the classes to our specific needs and requests. One does not have to be a member of the LGBTQIA+ community to benefit from this class, as it was designed to be open to all parenting styles. We also enjoyed Lou's extreme commitment to science based advice and the many studies they seemed to be able to quote on the spot.

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LGBTQIA+ Takatāpui

A term collectively used to represent people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual and anything else (plus). "Takatāpui is a traditional Māori term meaning ‘intimate companion of the same sex.’ It has been reclaimed to embrace all Māori who identify with diverse sexes, genders and sexualities such as whakawāhine (trans women), tangata ira tāne (trans men), lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer. These are often grouped under the term ‘Rainbow communities’." as cited by Elizabeth Kerekere

LGBTQIA+ Takatāpui


102 Jervois Road, Herne Bay, Auckland

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