Friday, September 28, 2018

Nude Gardening Day

New Zealand will hold its first 'National Gardening Week Nude Gardening Day' on October 20th this year. 

National Garden Week, brought to you by Yates NZ, is held in the middle of October each year and this year, for the first time, is including Nude Gardening Day in its line up of activities. 

Following publicity in May this year of World Naked Gardening Day and the Southern Hemisphere conditions being less than favourable for gardening without clothes in New Zealand, a decision was made to shift the date to a more inviting time of year. 

After an approach by Yates NZ, we decided to align our nude gardening event with their National Gardening Week which has goals - fostering a love of gardening with a focus on growing not only plants but friendships, good health, strong communities and closer connections with nature - very similar to the fundamentals of naturism. 

This year, National Gardening Week is focussing on helping butterflies to flourish with a national Swan Plant planting day on October 20th. Butterflies, including the much loved Monarch Butterfly, are key pollinators for our fruit and veges. Last year saw a national shortage of Swan Plants, the main diet of Monarch caterpillars, causing a large number of the population to be wiped out and Yates is getting behind the drive to avert a similar crisis this year. 

The NZNF are thrilled to be onboard with this event, doing our bit to boost butterfly numbers, and highlighting the many benefits of getting outside clothes-fee for a person's mental and physical health and well-being. 

Many of our clubs around the country will be joining the Swan Plant planting day event and we hope that many of you will participate in Nude Gardening Day wherever you can also. 

Friday, August 24, 2018

In Honour of Polly

The naturist community lost one of their own recently. Polly Fairbrother was a beautiful lady, a true naturist, a kind spirit, and a special friend. 

Polly had been a member of Hawkes Bay Naturist Club for several years, previously to that a member of Wellington Naturist Club and many of us had met her at recent rallies in the North Island.  

Some who had the chance to meet Polly, knew of her tragic past and that she understandably continued to suffer the effects of a person who had gone through so much trauma. 

Some days Polly came across as a strong self-assured and spiritual lady who selflessly gave of herself in the healing of other people's physical and emotional pain. Other days, Polly hid under a grey curtain and couldn't be reached, being herself in need of healing from such great physical and emotional pain.

Sadly for us, Polly decided to leave her struggles here on earth and she took her own life.
I have written previously about our efforts to support and partner with the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand in order to reach members of their community and share with them the benefits that can be found through naturism and getting close to nature. 

From the role that vitamin D exposure plays in the relief of depression, the feeling of freedom and grounding found by walking with bare feet on the grass in the fresh air, to the experience of acceptance and respect that can be found within our community.  

Polly had a wide range of groups and communities that she was involved with but her father, Russell Fairbrother QC, described Rapere (HBNC) as "the one place that she felt some peace". 

If our efforts with the MHFNZ are in any way successful, we need to ensure our clubs are havens for all people. Places where every person, with all the diversity that they represent, are accepted. And acceptance sometimes means not taking offence or um-bridge when someone, who is under a grey curtain, isn't able to be in turn responsive. Many of our own members have "good and bad days". We don't necessarily know every circumstance that has brought a person to where they are today so we need to be kind and supportive to all. Every day. 

Polly was totally focused on sharing the message of health and well-being and while she was unable to continue her own fight, this doesn’t change the essence that tangible benefits and healing can be found through naturism and getting close to nature. 

Polly's passing has left a big hole in our community, and we need to carry on her legacy of caring for others and giving, even from our own lack of having. And while we are at it, we do need to care for and attend to our own acceptance and healing. In doing this, we can truly live in accordance with the naturist philosophy: "Naturism is a way of life in harmony with nature characterised by the practice of communal nudity with the intention of encouraging self-respect, respect for others and for the environment".

Thursday, May 3, 2018

World Naked Gardening Day

The New Zealand Naturist Federation is supporting the annual World Naked Gardening Day event and encouraging people around the country to garden without clothes on this Saturday.

Inspired by the success of the World Naked Bike Ride, the inaugural World Naked Gardening Day took place in September 2005 and in 2007 the event date was moved to the first Saturday in May annually.

Second only to swimming, gardening is at the top of the list of family-friendly activities people are most ready to consider doing nude. Gardening naked is not only a simple joy, but as you feel the sun and breeze on your skin it gives a healthy sense of both our body acceptance and our relation to the nature and the environment.

Anyone can garden, young or old, singles, family or community groups. From planting a herb garden or annuals on an apartment balcony, and families raking leaves in the back yard, to pulling invasive weeds along a bush track and cleaning up a section of beach.

In New Zealand, it is not illegal to be naked on your own property and in appropriate public places, such as beaches or even regional parks. It is not the lack of clothes that is the issue but any bad or deliberately offensive behaviour that goes with it.
Photo credit: Andrew Miller - New Zealand Naturist Federation

The New Zealand Naturist Federation is working to increase greater acceptance of non-sexual social nudity by the general population. Gardening naked, being close to nature and free of clothes in the fresh air all contribute to a sense of inner health and well-being.

But don’t just take our word for it, find out more about the benefits of clothes-free recreation and the naturist community in New Zealand on the New Zealand Naturist Federation website