Community Arts

2 Glenorchy group photo-16


Leslie is an active member of the vibrant community of Glenorchy, New Zealand. She has been involved in Community Heritage through the creation of a documentary film called The Glenorchy Road: A Dream Come True. She served on the steering committee of the 150th Anniversary of the Community celebrations in 2012, and is currently part of the Museum and Heritage Society who are developing the Glenorchy Museum. 


In 2012-3, Leslie played a part in a successful campaign to stop development of a bus tunnel through a UNESCO World Heritage Site and two nearby national parks. As part of that work she, and other members of the Stop the Tunnel group presented an international petition on the steps of Parliament and a year later addressed Members of Parliament in Select Committee. She can be seen here in a short film produced by the Green Party shot during the second Parliament visit when the RMA process was also at risk. In July 2013, the Minister of Conservation, Dr. Nick Smith, ruled against the tunnel. 


Leslie is involved in the Glenorchy Branch of Rural Women, the only national political lobbying group for women’s and rural issues in New Zealand. She serves on the Nurse committee, working to insure that the community has some access to medicine locally. She also serves informally as photographer and chronicler of the group’s activities, which include annual fundraising events, networking with other women’s groups, and a community Harvest Festival. She also helps to lead the community Book Group, and is a part of the non-committee who organize a series of local lectures called the Cosy Winter Talks. 


Leslie fundraises annually for the New Zealand Cancer Society and is part of the EnviroGY group who look to support conservation and community endeavors in the local region. 


© Leslie Van Gelder 2017