Although Family Violence in New Zealand isn’t a recent issue, it’s increasingly causing concern for our nation. Despite numerous initiatives implemented across the country, the unsettling truth is that family violence cases have continued to rise over the past 5 years. These statistics paint a worrying picture, but they only scratch the surface of the problem. According to the NZ Family Violence Clearinghouse, a mere 30% of these cases are reported to the police, indicating that many individuals silently endure violence behind closed doors. This reality sheds light on the harsh truth that countless New Zealanders are grappling with the distressing aftermath of family violence and urgently require the necessary assistance and support to break free from these harmful situations. 


Purple Token Day stands as a student-driven movement, dedicated to rallying behind charities and organizations devoted to tackling one of New Zealand’s pressing social concerns: family violence. On this special occasion, secondary school students are invited to ditch their uniforms and don a purple token (a symbol of support) that echoes the color of family violence awareness. To amplify their backing, students are urged to contribute a gold coin donation, which will find its way to a local charity working tirelessly to prevent family violence. 

Beyond the surface, this day seeks to foster a deeper understanding among students about the repercussions of family violence, encouraging heightened awareness and empathy. 


I am Robert Unsworth, the founder of Purple Token Day. My journey into this initiative began when I stumbled upon a few disturbing facts about family violence. This discovery led me down a rabbit hole of unsettling statistics about this issue in New Zealand. As my awareness grew, so did my concern and passion for combating family violence. I embarked on brainstorming sessions to find ways to aid the hundreds of thousands of Kiwis who experience family violence. As a year 13 student, I had an epiphany about the power that the student body has in effecting change in the world. Through research and meetings with family violence prevention charities and leaders, I created Purple Token Day. I believe that Purple Token Day carries immense significance for all secondary schools to engage in. Many people remain unaware of the far-reaching detrimental effects and scale of family violence in New Zealand. This initiative serves not only to raise awareness about this issue, but also to offer a tangible display of support to its victims, encouraging those affected to report their cases of family violence. Moreover, the initiative provides direct help through charitable donations. Purple Token Day’s importance lies in sending a powerful message to victims—that they are not alone, and that a network of support exists to champion their cause. In the promotion of reporting and providing practical help through donations, this initiative contributes directly to alleviating the pain caused by family violence and signifies a meaningful step toward change.​


National Purple Token Day is on Thursday 21st of September – Week 10 of Term 3.  

This day is taking place as a lead up to Family Violence Awareness Month; October. 


Purple Token Day aims to mobilise widespread involvement from secondary schools across New Zealand, amplifying the potential impact on our collective vision of a violence-free country. 

We extend a warm invitation to all schools in Aotearoa to be part of this meaningful initiative. Whether you’re a student, teacher, or principal, we encourage you to bring your school on board! 

We understand that a non-uniform day might not be everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s perfectly fine! There are multiple ways to contribute. Join us in raising awareness about family violence in the manner that best suits your school’s ethos. Organise fundraisers to support local charities and in turn, your very own community. 

If your school embraces the spirit of Purple Token Day, kindly confirm your participation through email  robert@purpletokenday.com


So far, Purple Token Day has confirmed participation (in some form) from: 

Which means we have all Tauranga secondary schools on board! And we hope we can add more regions across the country soon! 


Get your school on board with the day

Encouraging your school to participate in Purple Token Day is a powerful step towards supporting family violence prevention. Start by discussing the initiative with your school’s administration, explaining its significance and impact. Present a well-structured proposal that highlights the educational value of the event, emphasising how it aligns with your school’s values. Collaborate with fellow students, teachers, and parents to garner support and enthusiasm. With a united effort, you can make a compelling case for your school’s involvement in this meaningful initiative. 

Promote the day

Promoting Purple Token Day effectively is key to its success. Utilise various communication channels within your school community, such as school newsletters, social media platforms, and bulletin boards. Design eye-catching posters that highlight the purpose of the event and its impact on combating family violence. Organise engaging assemblies or presentations to inform students about the significance of wearing purple tokens and contributing to the cause. Engage influencers or student leaders to spread the word and create buzz around the event. By fostering excitement and understanding, you can maximise participation and impact. 

Increase your awareness on Family Violence

Educating yourself and others about the reality of family violence is crucial for fostering empathy and driving change. Organise workshops, seminars, or guest speaker sessions that shed light on the various aspects of family violence. Collaborate with local experts, counsellors, or representatives from family violence prevention organisations to share their insights and experiences. Provide resources such as informative pamphlets, videos, and online articles to help students deepen their understanding of this critical issue. By increasing awareness, you empower students to become advocates for change and create a safer environment for all. 

Donate to Charities

Contributing to family violence prevention charities through Purple Token Day is a meaningful way to make a difference. Work with your school to select a local family violence prevention organisation that resonates with your community’s values and goals. Encourage students to make gold coin donations on the designated day, highlighting the tangible impact these contributions can have on supporting victims and breaking the cycle of violence. Collaborate with the chosen charity to share success stories, statistics, and information about their initiatives, showcasing the real-world change that their work brings about. Through donations, you amplify the collective effort to address family violence and create positive change within your community. 

A Message from Angie Warren-Clark

Before becoming an MP, Angie worked to reduce family violence, from volunteer to Domestic Violence Advisor to Womens’ Refuge Manager. Recently Angie has had her members bill, Crimes (Child Exploitation Offences) Amendment Bill signed into law. This bill looks to provide justice to those who have been affected by grooming, both online and in person. Her Family Proceedings (Dissolution for Family Violence) Amendment Bill will have its first reading this term. This Bill removes the mandatory two year wait for divorce where there is proven domestic violence.


What is Purple Token Day?

Purple Token Day is a student-led initiative aimed at supporting charities and organisations working to combat family violence, one of New Zealand’s significant social issues. On this day, secondary school students are encouraged to wear a purple token (item) to show solidarity with victims of family violence and raise awareness. It’s also an opportunity to make a gold coin donation to a local family violence prevention charity. 

Purple is the colour associated with family violence awareness. Wearing a purple token helps symbolise support for the cause and shows your commitment to combating family violence.

A token is any item of purple that you can wear to school.  A token is defined as:  ‘a thing serving as a visible or tangible representation of a fact, quality, feeling, etc.’ 

Getting your school involved in Purple Token Day is easy! Start by discussing the initiative with your school administration and teachers. You can use the provided resources, such as posters and educational materials, to explain the importance of the event. Encourage participation among students and promote awareness throughout the school community.

While Purple Token Day primarily targets secondary school students, primary schools and intermediates can also choose to participate if they believe the initiative aligns with their values and goals.

On Purple Token Day, students are encouraged to bring a gold coin donation to school. The collected donations will then be contributed to a local family violence prevention charity chosen by your school. This is a meaningful way to support the cause and make a positive impact. You may also choose to personally donate to a charity of your own choosing; we have some nationwide charities linked on our website but you may decide to find more online!

Absolutely! Parents, teachers, and school staff are encouraged to support Purple Token Day. Wearing a purple token and making a donation can set an example for students and further amplify the initiative’s impact. 

Raising awareness is an essential part of Purple Token Day. You can participate by wearing a purple token and engaging in discussions about family violence with your peers. Educating yourself about the issue and sharing resources can also contribute to raising awareness.

If you’re passionate about promoting the cause, you can become a leader for Purple Token Day in your school. Collaborate with teachers, students, and administrators to organise events, distribute materials, and encourage participation. Your dedication can make a significant impact on the success of the initiative.

To stay informed about Purple Token Day and its impact, you can follow the official social media accounts and regularly check the website for updates, success stories, and news related to family violence prevention efforts.

Absolutely! While wearing a purple item is encouraged to show your support visually, the most important aspect of Purple Token Day is raising awareness and contributing to the cause. You can still participate by engaging in discussions, attending events, and making a donation. 

Each school has the autonomy to choose a local family violence prevention charity that aligns with its values and goals. Schools can work closely with these charities to ensure that the donations directly support their initiatives. 

Yes, Purple Token Day is typically an annual event observed on a specific date chosen by each participating school. Check with your school administration or the official website for the exact date of this year’s Purple Token Day.


“Shine directly helps adults and children who experience domestic violence to become free from fear, violence and control” 

“We are an organisation for women and their children, to help prevent and stop family violence in New Zealand.” 

“The House of Gabriel Wahi o Te Haumaru offers wrap-around social and navigation services to whanau experiencing family violence.” 

There are also many more fantastic local charities all across Aotearoa that you can support!