Cult Chat Podcast is here!

Cult Chat Podcast is here!

Meet Cult Chat!

Cult Chat is a podcast collaboration project between three organisations, who are raising awareness about control, coercion, and cultishness. It started in June 2023 and its popularity is growing each week!

Join Dr Caroline Ansley, Lindy Jacomb and Liz Gregory as they traverse the cultiverse. Journey with them as they unpack the cult playbook, talk to leavers of coercive and controlling groups in New Zealand, and share their stories. On “Cult Chat” our hosts talk with experts to gain greater understanding of cultishness and call for Kiwis to cult-proof their lives. “Cult Chat” is a home-grown Kiwi podcast where each of the hosts are uniquely positioned to host a survivor-centric podcast, bringing their individual experiences of high control groups to the conversation.

Where can I listen?

Listen in at Plains FM Live fortnightly Tuesdays, or on demand, Spotify, or Apple Podcasts. You choose! Many thanks to Plains FM 96.9 who do all the technical stuff for us!

Join our Facebook page Cult Chat to be notified about upcoming episodes.

The Listener Feature

Cult Chat was featured in Anke Richter’s recent Listener article. If you want to read more about the collaboration and why New Zealand needs more cult awareness, read on…

Who are the hosts?

Our hosts have each spent years advocating for awareness, education and safety for survivors of harmful groups, and have had their own challenges in the cultisphere.

Dr Caroline Ansley

In 2015 Caroline founded the Centrepoint Restoration Project, after spending time at the notorious Centrepoint Community as a child. This project aims to support child survivors of the controversial community, and to advocate for acknowledgement and accountability for the harm that happened at Centrepoint. She is passionate about highlighting concerns for former and current children of high-demand groups, in particular where abuses are apparent. With personal childhood experience of harm at Centrepoint, Caroline was interviewed in the 2021 TVNZ docu-drama “Heaven & Hell: The Centrepoint Story” which won Best Director Documentary/Factual in the New Zealand TV Awards 2021. With her deep care for the vulnerable, her experience as a medical health professional, and her quiet resistance towards systems of power that enable abuse, Dr. Caroline is a gentle force to be reckoned with on Cult Chat.

Lindy Jacomb

Lindy founded the Olive Leaf Network in 2023, a volunteer-run charity that seeks to provide aid and advocacy for former members of high-demand religious groups in Aotearoa, and to raise awareness about their experiences. Lindy was born and raised in the Exclusive Brethren (now Plymouth Brethren Christian Church) and was excommunicated after leaving at 20 years old. With lived experience of religious trauma and spiritual abuse, a deep interest in the sociology of religious idealism and a passion for advocacy for the wounded, Lindy is thrilled to be part of Cult Chat.

Liz Gregory

Liz founded the Gloriavale Leavers Support Trust after years of informally supporting and working with leavers from Gloriavale. She now manages this charitable trust, providing ongoing support to Gloriavale leavers as they integrate into wider society and rebuild their lives. She also actively advocates for changes in social services and government action to better protect New Zealanders from structures that enable harmful group control. Liz’s enthusiasm, passion for change, and roll-your-sleeves-up attitude to the messiness of tricky societal situations makes her a delightful part of the Cult Chat trio.

How many episodes have you created?

We are already up to Episode Six and our listenership is growing weekly. Cult Chat will soon be playing on 12 more community radio stations across New Zealand and we hope to launch the You Tube channel soon.

So far you can enjoy these episodes:

  1. Alarm Bells are ringing – Why start a podcast on cults, coercion and control?
  2. Asking too many questions – Lindy Jacomb’s story living in and leaving the Exclusive Brethern
  3. Shame, Silence and Speaking up – Dr Caroline Ansley’s story of Centrepoint and onwards
  4. Why isn’t anyone doing anything – Liz Gregory’s involvement with Gloriavale Leavers
  5. Bonus episode: Three Lawyers and a Cult Activist – Liz Gregory chats to the victorious Gloriavale Leavers’ lawyers after the win in the Employment Court
  6. Is that group just a little bit weird, or is it quite a bit culty? Tell-tale signs of a harmful group.

We have so many episodes in production and hundreds of ideas swirling in our heads. Will you join us as we traverse the cultiverse?

Credit to the Listener and photographer Joseph Johnson