National Council of Women


The National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) works toward a gender equal New Zealand. Established by suffragists in 1896, we work for gender equality across the political, social and economic sectors. We have around 290 member organisations, 260 individual members and 21 branches around the country. We also work with international bodies such as the UN to make a difference for women globally.

Kate Shepphard“All that separates, whether of race, class, creed or sex, is inhuman, and must be overcome”
Kate Sheppard, first President of NCWNZ

Gender equality is a basic human right— It affords all genders equal value and treatment. It’s good for everybody. Research shows gender equality is better for business and the economy, it’s also the right thing to do.

Inequality persists in New Zealand as evident in paid and unpaid work, politics, sexism and violence against women. A third of NZ women will experience some form of intimate partner violence in their lifetime (New Zealand Violence Against Women study).

NZ has a gender pay gap of 9.9% (Ministry for Women). This means women earn $18.02 to every $20 earned by men.

Women are underrepresented in leadership and governance roles. Of the 120 seats in Parliament, 39 (32%) are occupied by women.

NCWNZ’s activity is diverse. We make a difference by representing women’s voices and influencing key decisions and issues through research, discussions and submissions. We encourage and educate people on the need for action and what they can do.

Locally, our branches make a difference for women in their communities through projects, events and advocacy. Globally, we assess and report on New Zealand’s progress toward meeting international agreements on women and girls, including the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women and the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.

We support member organisations in the work they do through providing information, connecting them with others who can help and representing their activities in our advocacy.

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National Office
PO Box 25-498
Wellington 6146
Phone 04 473 7623
Registered charity number: CC49050

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