History and purpose

More than 125 years ago, Sir William Alexander Smith recognised a lack of discipline and "Christian manliness" in the youth around him, and began the first Boys' Brigade company in Scotland. It took just three years for the first company to be formed in Christchuch, and the New Zealand movement grew steadily from there.

The tradition of Boys' Brigade has grown to more than 500,000 boys across 60 countries. It has inspired many other movements, taken on various forms, and the uniforms have been changed and updated. In New Zealand we still have 25 to 30 units successfully running in the traditional form. More info.


ICONZ continues the objectives and values of Boys' Brigade in New Zealand, with a whole new look and feel. If you were a member of a Boys' Brigade company "back in the day", you could be forgiven for not recognising these ICONZ units, which have now been running successfully for more than 8 years.

ICONZ teaches the same principles as Boys' Brigade, meets the inherent need of boys for adventure, and gives them a sense of belonging. But it does it in a way that the boys (and dads) of today can jump on board with. We have ramped up the programme, focussed on what is important to kiwi kids and seen huge growth as a result. All this without watering down the Christian message or the D.I.R.T. principles of Discipline, Integrity, Respect and Tenacity.