Ian Smith - early years of HIV AIDS in Christchurch
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[00:00:00] This program is brought to you by pride in zero.com. [00:00:05] Hi, I'm Emma Smith. [00:00:08] Yeah, when you're talking about the guys thing, the early 80s it was pretty. It's pretty phenomenal. Actually, we had a lot happening in that time. [00:00:18] There were a lot of number of organizations, which are very active. And of course, there was a whole political Law Reform happening in the in the middle, mid 80s. Anyway. And yeah, certainly was was a good place to be. [00:00:33] When you say full on What do you mean? [00:00:36] Well, when I there was a variety of activities and things that one could go through as opposed to the frog in the second you came from down south or somewhere, and it was pretty quiet, they're probably the same for them, or foreign people and small centers. And it was a place where people were picking yourself on the ground decided to, and often the path through, on the way after, after a few years of months, wherever else walking them popi to Sydney. But it was certainly it was certainly a good place to be. It was. Yeah, it was pretty exciting, [00:01:09] what kind of venues were available. [00:01:13] And it was number clubs. There was a solar Matusow was a fact, just trying to think that [00:01:22] there was lambda was in the early 80s. Anyway, from what I can remember, that was a sort of gathering coffee place, it was really a quite a good center for a lot of people didn't want didn't like the passing. [00:01:38] There were various other organizations, the length of Watkins which is actually still going today. And that's where people got together and chant various places, particularly around the mountains and what have you. [00:01:51] I just can't recall how but I know, I know, there was there's quite a lot of activity anyway. Yeah. So it was, it was quite a supportive place for people. And I think that's the interesting thing was that there probably was a degree of ghetto mentality in those days. In the 70s, and 80s, where people really congregated together, they felt comfortable together. And then as great people really came out or introduced their own selves to to themselves. [00:02:22] And I think that that's, that was very helpful in many ways in terms of what happened later in terms of age. [00:02:30] I don't want to talk about today so much, but the fact was that I think we've lost that community. Here. We have various isolated pockets. That is not that sense of community anymore. And people spread far and wide. And that makes it a lot harder to actually get messages across. Because it has been used anymore. I mean, obviously no farm has more. But here we have more due to the yes quick. [00:02:58] Here we go venues now the same Why [00:03:02] was it easy to be openly gay in Christchurch in the early 80s? [00:03:08] Um, yes and no. People, [00:03:11] people who didn't care. I mean, obviously, we're open about their sexuality. [00:03:18] But I suppose for many people, it wasn't it was difficult to actually be really open. I mean, crisis is really conservative cycle p talk about Wellington. [00:03:30] But yeah, it was it was a comfortable place to be. And as say, you had those alternatives from the hip sexual scenes, guys. That was that was a great asset for a lot of people. [00:03:44] What about the ideas of knowing what was happening in gay or queer communities around the country? Or even internationally? Was there much news coming in to Christchurch? [00:03:58] I'm just trying to recall. I mean, they're obviously I mean, people travel [00:04:05] and travel a lot. And I mean, I've been to various other countries and experience casings, and there, and of course, people going back, we'll talk about their experiences and what have you. And obviously, that would motivate others to question guys. Well, [00:04:21] I think we were raised very in touch what was happening? I'm pretty sure that we [00:04:26] we knew what scenes were aware and what was happening, and particularly in terms of more formal things, or lack of. [00:04:35] Yeah, so I think we will be in touch. [00:04:38] I guess that kind of question comes from nowadays, so easy to think of communication, you know, with the internet, with Google, with mobile phones. But this isn't an age in the early 80s, where there was none of that. And just, I guess I was trying to figure out well, how, how isolated was that? [00:05:03] Yeah, I think we had access to your other gay information and magazines, and what have you from overseas, particularly, say, Sydney in San Francisco. [00:05:15] So I mean, I think we were pretty well in touch with with nice things are happening. We, we did get regular updates, through having those magazines as to what was happening in places. [00:05:27] And of course, I mean, there was always the telephone, we still had the telephone, of course, even though we didn't have the internet. And of course, the written word as well. So I mean, lessons and what have you would be going backwards and forwards and again, experiences will be expressed and transmitted to various other people. So I think it wasn't seen as a liability. Because we obviously we didn't know any different. I mean, that was what we had. And that's what we had to make use of [00:05:54] When was your first knowledge of HIV AIDS. [00:06:00] sep tember 84 audios for [00:06:04] what happened [00:06:06] was basically through my flatmate who was actually a GP. And he'd been opened states, San Francisco for hot iron, and then became very aware of men who have sexual name and becoming unwell with this mysterious disease. And it seemed to be falling a pattern took particularly within the gay community again, welcome and Haitian people. So I mean, that's, that's the first awareness. I had personally. [00:06:42] Job since the candidate concerns about what might happen here. How did [00:06:47] he relate what was happening in San Francisco? [00:06:53] What kind of [00:06:53] why he was obviously from a medical point of view is obviously concerned, because I'm going to hear was a disease which is manifesting itself, the unknown way. And there seemed to be no cure. [00:07:06] And everybody was at a loss to know what to do. And people were dying very quickly. I mean, in those days, it was not unusual for a person, Emma contracted the virus be dead within about four months or five months. So there was no cure, and there was no way of knowing how they're going to tackle it wasn't a little bit later on, they found out was a virus, and so forth, and people like Gallo, and and the chap in France, potentially discovered the virus comes from after that, [00:07:39] after kind of that initial hearing of this thing, what what did you do? [00:07:45] It was in response to what we've heard from him. And obviously, the route of people using becoming rapidly aware, because of this communication between particular between San Francisco, New York and New Zealand, [00:08:00] we decided that we should set up some sort of a support network. [00:08:06] And that was actually happening in response in San Francisco, particularly with the shanty program, which was the studio there. And it was a gay men's health crisis in New York. There were two bodies, which had started these support programs for people. Because obviously, being an unknown disease, there was a lot of fear surrounding it. You know, even the men or women, I shouldn't say even the medical fraternity didn't know what to do with it. And they were concerned about how it's going to be spread. Could it be spread through the you know, all these things we had read law recently, perhaps with birth, learn all these sorts of things? In fact, we're still here today, we're just the kindergarten, child center, Jonathan, like what the, in Auckland recently ostracize the kid for being HIV positive. Anyway, I'm going on a tangent here. [00:09:00] So yeah, that was what we perceive was happening. And we thought, well, we better be doing something about it. Because even though we weren't aware of him, and don't say, well, we didn't have it, we weren't aware of having HIV in. In New Zealand, it was a case of Let's be prepared. So it was at that point where five others I was there, got together and talks about what we could do. And with the bounty program in mind, we could set up something similar to support people who ultimately became unwell with HIV. [00:09:37] You told me a wee bit about the the shanty program and how that kind of works. [00:09:43] Why members of hazing on this one now, but the Sunday program basically was a support program, which provided care for people who who are well, I had been discriminated against, probably kicked out of combination, lots of physicians and work and so forth. And just basically ostracized from society. So it was really a program there, which picked up the pieces and, and volunteers provided that care. [00:10:15] And particularly, even where people have lost that part, that's because their partner was I was concerned about them themselves being infected, and that sort of thing. So these people were totally isolated in many ways, but needed some support, obviously. [00:10:31] And that's the charity program, broadly speaking provider that, so I present, not only was it just a gear in terms of support, it was also to do with providing food and accommodation, otherwise, other things were necessary, and hospitals and that type of thing. [00:10:48] So the five people that you were talking about that meet to talk about forming some kind of support, head that group come together before I mean, was that part of a another organizing, that, that you made all just individuals coming together? [00:11:03] I mean, that these people had some, obviously some input into into community as a whole. I mean, they weren't just people coming off the streets, and let's do it. They had been involved in gay politics and all those other things as well. And I mean, [00:11:19] yeah, all of us had some sort of connection with, with gay, my own movements, and so forth. [00:11:27] Yeah, so um, it was a Christian of realizing that we had we had the capability of bringing something together was just a natural for organizing it, and making a stand. [00:11:39] So how did you make a start up, [00:11:42] we had a couple of we had several meetings, and it was decided, and it was funny, because I had actually sold a business several months before, and I was planning on being semi retired, [00:11:53] I did have an art gallery, which was a small place, and it wasn't going to be well. But anyway, I had time finished off that I became this coordinator of this group. [00:12:04] Because the other ones were very busy, and all had positions and so forth. And it was, [00:12:11] was muted, that we should really begin recruiting people. And that sort of began happening, [00:12:19] the invite you for. [00:12:22] So putting the word out, really, and it was more aimed at, obviously, men who have sex with men or gay identify themselves as [00:12:30] guy. [00:12:32] It wasn't discrimination about women, it was just the fact that the men were the ones who are probably primary going to be the ones affected. And therefore there, the motivation would be to be perhaps involved in an organization like that. [00:12:47] And then we were in contact with all kinds who were forming a similar organization and Wellington, the second summer I, that was basically through more the gay movement, Gay Men's movement. [00:13:01] And we then decided that we would recruit people advertise and all that sort of thing to get people interested, pass the word around, and start a formal process to screen people and that sort of thing. And we reset it back from March 85. It was not 85 as our first intake. [00:13:23] And fortunately, one of our members of the small group was, [00:13:28] was in the midst of the administrator on CPE it or the Polytechnic as it was there, and made a room available for us for that first gathering. [00:13:40] And we also, we had about, I think we screened about 50 people and found out this younger, was suitable. I mean, not everybody was always suitable, even though they wanted to be a volunteer, the fact was that they might, as another agenda, we might have a lot of stuff that while it might not be to cope with the system, rational mind rise. Simple as that. So we did the screening process, we came up with around about 30 people. [00:14:07] We actually some of the expertise from Auckland, because they had several leading people their principal net, and Kate Leslie, who was actually the senior social worker with the Oakland hospital. [00:14:22] And they could bring skills [00:14:25] and awareness about what the real situation as Bry said, being in San Francisco, he'd come back from there. So he was obviously aware of the shanty program. And of course, right Tyler, who was like all the local here the time, there's an awful [00:14:39] he also had experience and charity program. So we're drilling their expertise, and we asked them if they'd come down and help us with a fitness process in terms of education and no training. So it was basically a formal training, based on counseling based on support. There wasn't much given to prevention at that point in time, because our main concern was well, okay, well, a lot of people were overseas possibly come back, there might be a well, what we can do for them, how have we got a team here to provide that support. And we couldn't rely on the existing services because the existing services waiver, pretty ignorant about what the issues were. And we're pretty fearful about their own possibility of getting a disease. And the medical fraternity didn't want to know. And the government didn't, either, because it was another costly health programs. And so it really came down to the community to actually provide that, that service initially, [00:15:38] when you said the medical community didn't want to know what what does that mean? [00:15:41] Well, basically didn't know that. They didn't, didn't understand what it was. [00:15:47] Obviously, we weren't fully informed about what it was. Nobody else overseas, we knew either that point. But [00:15:56] it was a case of [00:15:58] I suppose medical people looking at it as as another possible disease, which might affect people in this country. But it wasn't a yet. Therefore, it was that correct? Correct priority, and it was the same regardless. And the mental, mental medical health services in general, [00:16:14] at that stage in 1995, within many known cases of HIV AIDS and New Zealand, [00:16:20] um, what was probably about one or two. Yeah. [00:16:27] Embrace being one of them. Yeah. [00:16:30] And it wasn't till later on. [00:16:33] During 26 more people came, came forward. So and it wasn't until later that we actually had our first first time. [00:16:43] President, [00:16:44] Bruce Bernie's sounds quite extraordinary to be able to come back to New Zealand, and to be openly positive. Yeah, yeah. And not only that, we actually actively setting up support groups. Did you know how much [00:17:00] I met him. He, he did a trip through the South Island, which basically raised awareness with a few leading people who came into here. [00:17:11] But it was quite a quick, quick trip, it was probably only about a few days. And then back to back to North again. [00:17:19] I think he, he, obviously was aware that it was a there was a need for awareness about the disease and what was happening. And that's why he put a face on. And that still really applies today, it hasn't changed because of the height, the disease and hide the people, then people think it's gone away. So briefly did what was necessary to do and what we needed to do in the future as well. I mean, I know it's, it's pretty hard to ask a person to do that. We personally volunteer to do that. But it's very necessary to do. And I respect him greatly for doing it. Because I know how hard it will be. But yeah, Bruce was the first person really got up the answer, welcome. I'm HIV positive, what I wasn't as. [00:18:04] And this is what is going to happen to me, which ultimately did. And he motivated people to really get going and doing something about it. [00:18:15] Can you recall in those early days and at 45, what the feeling was within sabor, gay community towards this [00:18:28] really ambivalent money, it was a fact wasn't denial, I mean, lots overseas. [00:18:35] Let's carry on down. I mean, we, we didn't really know, how was actually been transmitted. We knew that something to do with sexuality and sex and stuff like that. And it was probably to do with why gay men, white men, all as Christians coming up, you know. [00:18:56] And you put two and two together some extent, but you knew that game men, particularly in those areas, like the cast on set was the scar six was full on multiple sexual partners and so forth. I mean, that was same thing here too. But [00:19:12] it seemed to lean itself towards the possibility. It could be just the gays ease, we still were convinced about [00:19:20] it didn't matter whether this guy does anyway, because the factors of his disease. And I don't see anybody I couldn't see anybody's sexuality have an effect on there. The fact was that your human being and and you picked up a virus, so a lot, that person needs support, and dream up simply sir. So I mean, it was, but here, I think, yeah, took it took a while before people really realized exactly what situation possibly could be. [00:19:48] And [00:19:48] what about in the wider community was there kind of apprehension or just something that this was actually happening overseas, and we don't need to care about at all, [00:19:57] I think people like definitely it five or becoming more concerned about it [00:20:04] was more news coming through about numbers of people. And the fact that people were dying relatively quickly. There was no cure, and take a long time for governments to get into gear, and to be doing anything. In fact, it was the guy he made, he produced the first leaflets, and pamphlets that went out. [00:20:26] And the health department had refused all the government mercenaries to fund any of that sort of stuff at all. So there's a guy came into the front of those initial information, talk papers. And funnily enough, the health services, grabbed the moment I thought it was great man is like a nation. That doesn't mean nothing about. [00:20:48] And I mean, the fact was that the AIDS organization, only a support network, initially, providers really the only information, substantial information and information to to the public, not in the public, but across their own communities as well. [00:21:08] And the health services then began to recognize that there was a real problem. [00:21:14] So I mean, that that whole process that people gradually became aware of that, and we're concerned [00:21:22] was an important part of the process to actually start prevention work. But unfortunately, it's there's always people are [00:21:32] in denial, they were [00:21:35] left hasn't changed back then. [00:21:39] So the organization based in Christchurch didn't have much to do with the other centers, like Wellington, and Auckland was through a kind of an overarching communication and war. [00:21:49] Others communication. Yeah. [00:21:54] I mean, later, later on, in 8586, there were regular sort of get togethers of these organizations, that that really came out of the Gates Foundation. But initially, we're working a bit in isolation, I suppose. But we don't see sharing information. And we're trying to model programs too much others? [00:22:18] Could you describe for me that first intake of volunteers said to 50 people, what kind of people were coming forward? [00:22:27] Okay, models are men who have sex with men really identified a guy or not. [00:22:34] As a out of that 50, we selected only 30. [00:22:40] There were people who had been active, are active, or had been active in the community, various organizations, [00:22:48] or people who felt that they needed to do something on these to provide what they could in terms of expertise, or knowledge, or whatever it was, or just the personal power, right? Being able to do something. [00:23:05] Yeah. And it was, it was pretty broad spectrum. [00:23:09] from [00:23:11] whatever brick class to run, professors, you know, and it was, it was a good cross section of people of all ages, probably more sort of [00:23:23] late 20s, 35 [00:23:25] age group. [00:23:28] And when you say screening, what kind of things did you say or do to kind of get down to 30, from 50, [00:23:37] was more was more about asking people what, what they saw as what they can contribute, and what sort of skills they brought, [00:23:46] whether they had any background in terms of medical counselors, and whatever. [00:23:54] And also, the motivation was the important one. [00:24:00] We didn't really want people who, [00:24:03] who really just wanted to help people, [00:24:07] help people from the illness, less stuff, or help or cure or something like that. [00:24:13] Maybe some religious affiliations, more the way outlines, I should say, would be would have been excluded, because of, again, the motivations in terms of Ryan agendas, with the agenda that we're particularly concerned about. Because let's face it, you're dealing with people who are unwell, who are really facing a short life span. And they certainly didn't want to have to cope with somebody else's agenda or a lack of understanding. [00:24:45] So there was always things [00:24:47] you can't always be 100% on these things. But I think with the skills that, [00:24:53] that our panels, and our panel brought two to the interview process, profile. Any, [00:25:01] any deficit. [00:25:04] I know we set ourselves off as Judge on jury, but I think that's necessary. [00:25:09] And you say it was March 1985. That was [00:25:14] around that time was when the homosexual law reform bill was going through Powell, and how did that impact on what we were trying to do in terms of supporting people with HIV AIDS? [00:25:26] What we weren't, we weren't supporting anybody at that point. must remember, I mean, this was this initial phase, and we didn't have anybody apart from Bruce altman. We didn't have anybody down here anyway, the winner of [00:25:39] so really, it was it was really a mix of [00:25:43] I suppose it was helpful in a way that the whole law reform process was taking place person actually gained access to those people who are political, and are willing to get off the bat, some do something. And, and also, it gave a venue to recruit from gave a venue for a while raising awareness. [00:26:06] And it also provides its Leslie, the AIDS Foundation with a pretty good hammer, in terms of the bill, and why it should be passed. [00:26:18] So it was it became political as well, as became political. But it was a for the benefit of the community that became political. I mean, there are other people who are more involved in that side of it. And they was more involved in trying to get an organization off the ground and getting people trained. [00:26:38] If you could maybe talk to him about the training, what was involved in training people. [00:26:45] We went through, we went through the issues about the possible transmission disease, we went through issues about death and dying. [00:26:56] also talking about support somewhat, what sort of what sort of supports were provide. [00:27:06] We didn't set out to be counselors, but counseling was, was an integral part in terms of the volunteers of being aware of our processes. And what happened happens there. [00:27:22] We talked about the health system we talked about referring on and all those sessions and an hour or two day period [00:27:31] was a lot of bonding going on as well, a lot of those sorts of bonding activities and what heavier [00:27:39] and getting people to talk about themselves, and how they felt about it, and what will happen, and so forth. So it was a real mixture of of understanding about diseases, and dying, and so forth, but also understanding themselves, and how they were understanding what support systems needed to be licensing and understanding what they can expect from the health system. So that was two days. After that we had regular trainings on the Monday night for six weeks. And that, [00:28:14] again, we didn't make any final decisions as to who was going to be in the grip. Until then, we start off with the initial 30 on and they carried on for six weeks now. So that if anything came out, which wouldn't be helpful for the person with with the disease, then we would ask them, if they would want to standing aside at the moment, that'd be something else for leisure. So I mean, it was purely focused on support. [00:28:45] And to the end, we brought in experts from other fields, who were involved in support for other diseases, and they provide their expertise. So this sessions will say, one of six weeks, at the end of that six weeks another assessment. [00:29:00] Some people opted out and said, well, that's not for me, it's too heavy. And other state, of course. So first support group was formed, basically [00:29:11] an instrumental we had [00:29:15] I think, for that year, we had another to, [00:29:20] to grips form for the same process, [00:29:25] and soul [00:29:26] sighs [00:29:27] Yeah, basically, again, I mean, we could pick and choose a bit because we had a good pool of people now. Now, we didn't have anybody to support it. But it was ongoing training process of ongoing [00:29:40] process where people would develop themselves and feel comfortable with their own feelings with other people. So so that was very important. [00:29:51] The training materials that you were using, where did they come from? [00:29:55] Very soon sources, I mean, we we turn on people with that expertise. They provided those resources. [00:30:04] And also talking about their own issues and songs and the sexuality and what have you, and all those things had to be confronted, because if somebody wasn't happy about their own sexuality, their God, you can't put that on somebody who's trying to [00:30:17] get through life, not the best way I can. [00:30:21] So there was all sorts of input there. [00:30:26] For you, what were the kind of biggest learnings over that period in terms of taking people through this process? [00:30:34] For me, I think [00:30:36] it was basically August for when I was learning about those issues as well. I have not got a medical background, I hadn't got a counseling background. [00:30:47] But I did have was an organizational background, an entrepreneurial background. [00:30:54] And that was where my strengths will live. And of course, obviously, I needed to understand I need to understand about the middle learning to understand but viruses and diseases, stuff like that. And I laid my hands on every piece of paper I could about the diseases that developing the state's will CDC, and metal enter a central disease control the lead [00:31:17] and got updates every week, are packed every day. I mean, people have grown fixes mines. So I became really not just me, but other people became experts on what this disease was doing, how it needs to be treated, not so much truth, because there's no trick and then how to be happy by to be supported and so forth to help possible transmissions for the rest of them. And also, it encouraged me to probably look at more in terms of social work and social supports, and all that sorts of things came into where, which I didn't I've been I've been involved in gay politics to some extent, but I hadn't been so in involved in other areas of that nature. That was development process may and had to become an expert, because Who else wants that? medical professionals, health department and government and whatnot. And the average person on the street had no idea whatsoever. [00:32:18] So a few of us became experts totally out of our fields, about something which is occurring overseas and [00:32:28] when you are getting those piles of information from overseas, Can you recall what you thought might happen in New Zealand? [00:32:38] I had lucked out that because of the of the kiwi [00:32:45] liking of travel? [00:32:48] I'm it was unusual for people to go overseas, particularly out of country the degree of before I don't necessarily [00:32:55] game in [00:32:57] terms of other communities, whatever. It's only a matter of time. [00:33:03] bound to have come here. [00:33:06] Yeah, we were very aware that it was just a matter of time. [00:33:11] Did you have any idea of the possible number of people that might be affected? [00:33:18] We can I engage that, by the way, what's happening? I mean, physically in America. [00:33:26] The hundreds and thousands, not hundreds of thousands of thousands of people were becoming on well, [00:33:36] it could be anywhere in the states didn't have to be in a major city. So it was obvious that [00:33:44] men who have sex with men were very vulnerable. And for some reason I said before Haitians, I still don't understand why [00:33:54] poverty poverty is because the white of our center spread. [00:34:02] So was it was it a Christian a time it was a Christian a listener of making sure people understood in the community, that was [00:34:11] an essential thing. But the first part was providing support for people who potentially came back from other systems in they didn't Israel catch the virus here, they bought it with it. [00:34:21] And that also had a double role in terms of predicting the society as a whole. [00:34:29] Because if they brought the virus back here, they need to understand that they couldn't do what they wanted to do, as they had done before. Not not that they weren't able to anyway, because they were pretty six. [00:34:43] So by the end of 1985, were you actually supporting any people with violence? [00:34:50] Or [00:34:51] not self? Not? Yeah. [00:34:54] And when did that start happening? [00:34:57] Why did you end up at 536? bucks? 36, early 86? [00:35:03] What kind of numbers? [00:35:05] Not large numbers. I need one or two people [00:35:10] that came back from America. [00:35:14] Right, provide support for them? [00:35:17] And what was that like suddenly being in real situation as opposed to going through training? How did that differ from training? To [00:35:27] be frank, it didn't seem to be a change, it was just a more of the same. Because we don't go through this in terms of knowing what we have to learn and, and we knew what we were up against. And we knew the people coming back had all sorts of diseases, being unwell. There was all sorts of issues in terms of families and myself things that we had to care about aware as well, trying to help families understand. [00:35:54] And particularly often dealing with sons sexuality, or Papi didn't know about. So those issues, the homophobia, then you had the community as a whole, who are concerned about them living next door, whatever it was going to work wherever it might have been. [00:36:15] I mean, obviously, some of these people in Africa work anyway. Then you've done it dealing with social services. You're dealing with medical fraternity, you didn't know what those [00:36:25] who were just as scared as anybody else. It's like went to a hospital, they were faced with their face slit under the door of the of the room, because they were isolated from everybody else. [00:36:39] I mean, the [00:36:42] people didn't learn what how to cope with these people. And that was a major problem. [00:36:52] Assad as a whole [00:36:57] unfairness. [00:37:01] Because people had because people were dying. Men were dying. [00:37:06] Why it's extremely [00:37:11] people ostracizing so was it was only it was a sexuality as well disease. [00:37:18] And it was almost like an excuse. [00:37:22] Oh, great, we've got something now we can get rid of these people. And we weren't MacDonough and easier. [00:37:30] And not willing to understand that transmission was [00:37:36] was more of a closer relationship and just being in the same room or drinking the same coffee cup and all that sort of stuff. said my paper. I mean, we as as terrorism [00:37:49] and involved in education of white supremacy, really helps give me community. [00:37:58] People were very careful about not drinking the same or having the same cup of coffees as we had [00:38:05] some issues with very pregnant [00:38:09] and not touching that that's probably the hardest thing for people that you [00:38:15] love the most is the discussion. [00:38:20] Okay, this [00:38:22] is okay. [00:38:24] So they were the ones who actually provided that [00:38:31] service ostracizing hungry young people, the young people, there were people [00:38:39] in their late teens, early 20s. Right? Whole Life of all four. [00:38:48] And now, maybe one year, [00:38:51] maybe less, every six months. [00:38:56] There were difficult times. They were they were political to. [00:39:01] And we had to confront those people who are making these irrational decisions. We had to confront the health services, [00:39:13] how inappropriate it was. These people should be isolated in such a manner that people will download from mass on in clubs and what have you freedom going in the room. [00:39:29] I mean, it's true, there was some uncertainty about the virus, but it became pretty, we're aware that this boss was transmitted certain ways it was just through the air, because of a through the year, let's face it would have been 50,000 more times people coming down with it. [00:39:48] And of course, the whole thing about the right wing and the evangelists and all the rest of all the fundamentalists grasp onto this one as it is a combination of God and so forth. So you won't have to well as well. And, and they were really, really quite happy to [00:40:06] support us onto these people. And contain them them as being citizens. So you all have all that stuff. [00:40:16] So it was, it was a very complex issue, and still is today. In those days, it was very even more complex, because of the fact was, [00:40:26] we are still [00:40:28] not totally [00:40:29] aware of what repercussions. [00:40:33] does, it does [00:40:36] also have to apologize for the sound effects in the background, which is, I think, some construction work, possibly because of the earthquake. So earlier on, but um, it's on, it's unfortunate. So I'm do hope this, our voices carry across over the young school played. [00:40:57] So in 1986, the AIDS Foundation came into being I'm just wondering, how did we move from the eight support network through to the AIDS invasion? How did that happen? [00:41:10] Well, midnight support network was basically a volunteer group, with no funding, resupply their own funding. [00:41:20] And then the government gave some money and f6. And [00:41:27] it was incredible to employ somebody to be in a coordinating role nationally, as well as a borders was established. And this was things. [00:41:39] And it really was just a question of, of combining that structure with the existing structures and putting them together and call them all the AIDS Foundation, which then really was helpful in terms of coordinating the, the focus, as well as having something to go with to the game, saying, Well, we've got this under our head here. This is happening now. We need funding for that same happened. So [00:42:10] the funding came in drips and drabs, it was 100,000. First. So this is a lot more money coming in. [00:42:18] But you see, the foundation also presented a very political front, because it was actually able to communicate with the politicians directly. And there were people who are in the foundation at that point in time. This was later on at six, who had a lot of expertise in the political area, and a lot of connections, important connections. That was all part of that process or part of a game show. [00:42:43] And also, the funding that came through them provided also the ability to employ people in the in the national sense, as well as local sets. So that's when there was no player night here on Regional Coordinator. [00:43:03] Was there ever a tension between, I guess, going from, you know, a completely voluntary situation to something that has paid staff, and also a tension between going from a kind of a support organization to something that's a bit more political, with the tensions that [00:43:24] know, the real I mean, the reality was that the people who were driving likewise, public, were all people who were employed except for myself. They're all busy with their jobs and what have you. And this was becoming quite, quite large in terms of time and commitment. Not that they progress that the fact was that I mean, the reality is I got her in the bread and butter first giving. And so there was no, there was no problem at all. We we wanted to retain our total in terms of being selfless organization about them. And we wanted obviously have a same was happening yourself. Because Oakland based organizations have a tendency to dismiss the cell phone as being something down there. We forget about that for a while. So we might have voice heard about those issues and like come up and either lead it was very supportive in terms of having a body there, which was able to softly channel the funding and provide that support as well. But we still had to fundraise as well. There is never enough money anyway. [00:44:36] So did the eight support network did that? [00:44:40] dissolve or did it kind of morph into this Morton? Yeah, [00:44:45] it was it was very gradual process. It just happened. [00:44:49] As foundation came along, interviews were done of people to be employed. That's right. I'm we've all realized that we weren't as a loose volunteer organization, were not able to provide that sort of national focus. I mean, we're talking about a huge problem, and we're talking about a national problem is not just a crisis problem, or Orlando, wherever it was a national problem, which had to be cope with a national basis not to have that power behind and had to have the right people behind. You had to play that political game. I mean, you had the [00:45:31] you had the Governor General, who was police became patron. [00:45:38] It was all it was all a political process, but it had to happen, because otherwise, how are you going to raise awareness? How are you going to get the politician was like, how you're going to get the money from the system? [00:45:48] Do you think in the formation of the AIDS Foundation that the focus changed on thinking, you know, we're talking about awareness, education, support? politics? How did you work out? What were the main things that the Gates Foundation should do? [00:46:07] Well, that was done. I mean, obviously, it was done with discussion with the various centers, and there was some we had we had meetings in Auckland as well. [00:46:16] And obviously, there was the priorities, obviously, were to provide support to people who are coming well [00:46:25] provide political support for law reform. [00:46:31] Also around source funding, which is another 40. more funding and produce materials information was it was one of the first priorities because you had to get information out there. And if I don't know, if you had seen the first information, paint posters came out, there were a few i i to [00:46:53] one, pretty big. [00:47:00] I [00:47:01] mean, anyone anyways, those, those posters were literally full of information, there were there are in terms of impact. They, they were not made for impact, they were there to provide information. And those posters were very expensive. They were glossy paper, they were sick, like watching the country. were everywhere, with AIDS, and big red letters, and so forth. [00:47:27] And it was also it was also making people aware that we're talking about HIV here. That's transmitted, and not aids, AIDS of the end of the line. [00:47:38] People thought, Well, here's somebody who's looks now they must have HIV, AIDS, or possibly that might be right. Here's some it looks fine. They probably haven't got anything. So that's get the message that HIV was a hidden, hidden category in infection. And aids was the end result that of others infections, because of live immune system. [00:48:05] And so those sorts of messages had to be coming through. And also, don't be afraid. It's okay to drink from a cup of somebody else might have us a week. Yeah. What's Okay, it is yes. Okay to blah, blah, blah. So that's what information getting was really important as initial step. Because we have to pave the way to, to try and offset this discrimination, this fear that was happening in communities. And it wasn't just out there was also within gay men or six of men, community. But yeah, I mean, we also had to inform how not to get this disease and link up then of course, with the sexual activity and transmission of body fluids also. [00:48:50] So that was another national effort. Likely we can do that, because I didn't have the money to do with but nationally, the head to my gum, direct communications and upon the government the spot we're doing health processes. So that was no other advantages when it was gonna, [00:49:09] did you see a change in gay or or men who have sex with men's attitudes towards six [00:49:17] recently, [00:49:21] we went, we went, we went the six police running like that, and we were there to stop people from having a good time. [00:49:28] But we, we did a lot of work in venues, in terms of education. And we also do a lot of fundraising with gay communities, gay lesbian community, lesbian community, women came on board as well. And they were great and supportive. [00:49:48] Even though there was a 50s, 20 [00:49:52] great degree, or there had been a few cases. [00:49:57] But yeah, I mean, [00:50:01] there obviously some people who, who made decisions not not to do certain things, not to do penetrative sex without a condom, and [00:50:11] others decide not have sex at all. [00:50:14] Almost [00:50:17] some, I mean, observe a reaction. [00:50:23] But if you had the information, if you understood how this virus was transmitted, and we're talking about how this virus is transmitted, then obviously, they will be comfortable about what they couldn't want, they couldn't do. So I mean, that was part of the education program. And that came more that came later because the foundation funded the people working in prevention within a community of men who have sex with men, I should say, because a lot of people are terrified as gay. Men have sex with men is important. [00:50:57] We're talking about activities we're talking about. Not necessarily where your head's at. But what you do with this, Dick. [00:51:06] Do you think that the level of the mile decreased, I mean, were people still denying it on the, you know, 8586 period, something I want to happen here? [00:51:23] For a long time after, still a [00:51:27] lot of people still and that's [00:51:30] what happened to you. [00:51:35] And they're always people who don't care, that always people can take responsibility for themselves and other people, sometimes now. I mean, let's say it takes two to tango. You can't blame one person with HIV. And they both make a decision about having a risk activity, we're talking about risk activity, we're not talking about risk. We're not talking about risk people, we're talking about risk activities. Now a message of the long time gets through. And we're talking about HIV, which is hitting disease, as opposed to AIDS. [00:52:08] So [00:52:11] that denial still there? And there are still people I mean, there are people in those days. Sure, right now, and they'll still be was dying to know, [00:52:21] unfortunately, or ignorance, but I can't understand how they can be learned about HIV today. [00:52:30] Maybe there? [00:52:32] I don't know. [00:52:36] So 1986, the AIDS Foundation was in place and you become the Regional Coordinator in the Caribbean region. So on safwan, what does it involve? [00:52:48] I'm basically more of the same. [00:52:52] Let's continue on with the program continue on with [00:52:56] with recruitment, continue on with diversification. [00:53:02] We are we we are we going to utilize volunteers and so forth? [00:53:09] And what sort of programs can we I mean, the National head [00:53:14] the prime focus was [00:53:17] men and six women. [00:53:20] My argument here was, well, that's fine. Because that's where the viruses die. [00:53:28] And where the way the pursuit of where the highest percentage of the virus is, is there then, as it is today. [00:53:38] But if we don't do something about other at risk activity, then there's no reason why this March and spread to other areas allowed people heterosexual to remember what it was supposed to be forever. [00:53:57] If you look, if you look at Africa, and potentially, we saw is happening near [00:54:03] huge numbers of people being affected. [00:54:07] Men with sex with men was heterosexual. [00:54:11] We're talking about a virus here doesn't give a fuck what you are. who you are, is what you do. [00:54:19] So it's quite simple as that. So we can't sit on or we couldn't sit on laurels and think Well, okay, well, this is a mains disease when we work is this. Because it's proof out there. That is the foundation foundations policy was that the virus was mainly when men have sex with men. And that's where we should be putting our energies. [00:54:44] We down here diversify that because a small sample [00:54:51] of all the nasty via [00:54:58] peace and water. [00:55:00] So we started doing education schools. [00:55:04] We started doing education with nurses with TPS [00:55:10] we started to recruit [00:55:13] more more [00:55:15] guys through the training program. And this stage one way, we always have people coming and going. But we had a consistent hundred and 20 people to three volunteers. We weren't going to get hundreds of people with AIDS. [00:55:32] So it made sense to actually utilize these people with various skills to work in other areas. [00:55:38] And we hide it we through the [00:55:43] generosity of a random person presage. [00:55:48] We were given a room and one of the bigger buildings near the square, [00:55:53] which has our volunteer. [00:55:55] And I mean, we had 700 friends on this, and we had regular weekly Sunday mornings are quite good. [00:56:04] But it was a training session often we had updates of of getting people getting updates on what's happening in terms of it. And also to talk about their individual groups that they're eventually worth was into as volunteer to do. [00:56:23] So we looked at the the sex industry, male and female. [00:56:30] We looked at the IV drug users, because they were injecting and sharing equipment. [00:56:38] I say the Mahdi population was vulnerable, because they were basically [00:56:45] discriminated against in many, many areas. [00:56:50] And we looked at other other areas as well, but primarily focused on Modi, Truckee Ivy charges, and sex industry as well as cost minutes to come. [00:57:02] And so we recruited actively people from those groups, and we train them as well for them, not for us not as white, gay man's to do. But for them to set up, set up their own organizations to go out and get this out there. And as a result of that, [00:57:22] we had one one woman who, who became coordinator of the prostitutes collective service today, we had a IV drug user who happened to be also a gay man, who had extensive experience in Europe and Asia in terms of the dragon [00:57:41] fraternity, and what you could do what you can do, he was also a part of originally from Australia, and had been on design frightening and sensitive as a team and traveled around the world. There was a guy who knew what it's all about connections. So he then got involved in the whole IV D. IV trying to use community while he was already in terms of the educational cycle, human game a graph from from Raspberry Pi scalar, dinner, for wanting some travel up and down the country and lobbied organizations involved in drug rehabilitation, as well as government to bring in a needle exchange program. I worked with Roger Roger, right, who's the center is called me after him here. And he bashed my ear about junkies for a long time. I mean, I you practically nothing about [00:58:45] pills and stuff at all know much about injecting. So anyway, Roger run. And Gary finally got this through the bill and it was changed that was changed proposition, you know, surges. That's history. And the currencies exchange with [00:59:01] motive turbo total, who was the arm of the Nottingham for AIDS process collected in terms of, of education from working women working. [00:59:16] And as a we also got involved with, we provide sessions for top GPS, because their skills in terms of counseling, we're, we're pretty busy. [00:59:30] And we got one of the top counselors down North Island. [00:59:35] I think still life. I can't remember his name right now, who did Saturday and Sunday morning situations, the only way they get in there was by promising them a free lunch. And [00:59:47] so we persuaded the reverse way of them. [00:59:54] And we did sessions with polytechnics. We're training students in terms of nursing. We went to [01:00:02] a mental health people and we also went to prisons. [01:00:09] We did work at the local prison here. Particularly mean, [01:00:15] that didn't go down too well with the officers. But anyway, and we advocated that there should be condoms available on pregnant women should be free new lenses. Why not? We're talking about cases here. [01:00:29] And still hasn't happened because I. [01:00:34] So we diversified and we say top school, school gets 13 upwards, and got permission from parents what I did, what did it did it right. But we didn't hide anything. We talked about sexuality. We talked about sex. We went into the children and your organization, we were doing something unique in terms of that. And we went to Catholic schools, and talked and talked about music, loads of stuff, either. So I'm quite revealing just how accepting institutions were about these things, because I realized the possibility of young people becoming effective. And they also realized that there to do something. [01:01:19] And there was no point in hiding the fact that we were talking about sex, we were talking about penetrative sex, not talking about sex and any other form but penetrative sex. And this is what you need to do. If you're going to add energy f6, we were obviously saying was not a good idea of your age. But if that's going to happen in the future, this is what you need to do. Same time, we're new kids of 10 and 12, we're having pairs of six. [01:01:48] And that's probably hasn't changed much today. [01:01:52] So to say it, kids shouldn't have sex education. [01:01:57] until after we after they're 14 1516 years of like rubbish factors they could become infected. [01:02:05] As time goes on, if, if it's [01:02:10] if people have become a we're [01:02:16] was any negative reaction or resistance to those kinds of programs being out there. [01:02:26] Now, actually, um, it's really low key, we didn't make a big noise about it. We just contacted the school on content, right people and people who are responsible for the health curriculum, whatever was [01:02:39] created with the parents, they had the option of saying the child could go and [01:02:44] 96% said this. [01:02:49] So it was really lucky. I mean, the public didn't probably really know what was going on. I mean, if we've made a noise, family planning on the styles, we work from and family planning Syria, we were doing something from the point of view of frontline HIV education. [01:03:09] Now, around the same time, there were things like the candlelight memorials and the AIDS quote, it's Memorial quote, was was coming up on I think, was 1988. Did you have much to do with those, those type of things [01:03:24] that came from America, that concept. [01:03:29] The growth was very, very good at raising awareness about what was happening, and the loss of loss of life. [01:03:40] It might have been in Rockland first, when the race started at the I can't just put a date on now. [01:03:46] I wasn't personally involved in it. But when it did come down here, I gone. Gone to that point. And the the head and central here several years, different times. [01:04:03] A number of people have spoken to just recount the late 80s is a time what late 80s and early 90s, when they were going to multiple funerals, like either one person was telling me you know, every fortnight doors, there was a funeral. Did that happen in Christchurch? [01:04:24] Yeah. Nice, great extent. I mean, obviously, people were dying. I knew a lot of people who died. But I mean, it wasn't. It wasn't like, I mean, [01:04:37] I mean, let's face it, you still had to some extent your ghettoized community, even a lower former culture. But this transition was happening over a period of time out to the white for wins. [01:04:54] But yeah, I mean, people are growing up together, people [01:04:59] party together, probably 60 [01:05:03] knew each other will their groups, metal milsom shows that sort of thing. Was it was relationships are established over a long period of time. So you obviously had, the bigger your sphere of friends when more people were subject to being lost. So I mean, it did happen here, women happened in with some love volunteers. But [01:05:32] it wasn't the same extent. [01:05:37] And unfortunately, oftentimes, because people will never actually never actually sit there and die of something. I mean, obviously, I didn't die of HIV itself, I had died in your money, right. [01:05:52] And that's normally what was on the best death certificate that died of pneumonia. So people didn't always know [01:06:04] that in a way that a service I mean, I was predictable family. [01:06:10] Protecting the part I made it. [01:06:13] On the other hand, people went to rehab the numbers of people that really were [01:06:21] became notified. But that sounds it's just, you know, statistics on just the number of piece of paper that you know, this person was Christmas Christmas, but that really is. [01:06:32] And it kind of makes you sit and think Oh, yeah. Not just in the next city. Yeah. [01:06:40] Next country. [01:06:45] When did you leave the election? [01:06:48] I initially 1990 the first time. [01:06:50] And why was that? [01:06:53] I suppose on, I was an activist and entrepreneur. And organizations have a face, they had an establishment face, where you're, where you recruit, where you raise awareness, where you do political stuff, [01:07:07] dollars, fundamental things to put an organization on straight in place. [01:07:13] I was the entrepreneur, I resisted being able to promote, just be able to sell something. And that's what it was really about. And I was an administrator, as well as I still did a lot of hands on stuff. [01:07:32] But the foundation was becoming more bureaucratic. [01:07:36] There were more, it's more, some paradise, Oakland. [01:07:42] There are national managers a beggar points in that sort of stuff. [01:07:46] And I thought, well, I've done my bit. [01:07:51] See what I can do overseas. [01:07:54] And the reason why I went to Thailand to go to Thailand in 1990, the first days conference, there, Bangkok, I was the first Asian. [01:08:03] I went there simply because [01:08:07] I knew that there was a major tourist activity from here to Thailand. And most of us were heterosexual, no way. [01:08:20] But it was only a matter of time, because in Thailand, there was a huge problem. [01:08:26] 60% of all the farmers in northern Thailand were infected. Because Because of sex workers. [01:08:34] I knew it was only a matter of time, these people are going to increase the probability here. Left Well, if I contribute something to time in terms of people there, which are going to help New Zealand eventually, and how going to something new. That's reason why me. So I got out of the organization here simply because of becoming more mature critic was wasn't really I didn't feel totally careful, I had lost size of what was about. I didn't feel totally comfortable with that role in that organization. And Regional Coordinator was flexible managers aren't as a different role. [01:09:15] But you actually did come back to the a translation on the early 2000s. [01:09:22] I [01:09:23] hadn't when I came back from Thailand, which country. [01:09:29] I came back and didn't have a job and try to get back to Asia, in fact, with the World Health Organization [01:09:37] never be a job in New Guinea. [01:09:40] working there. [01:09:43] I know nothing about New Guinea, about 700 languages. [01:09:49] How am I going to possibly physically and how am I going to get my messages through [01:09:56] what's happening there. And I declined it. Sorry, getting that office office. [01:10:02] So anyway, I'm going to talk to a friend of mine who was who actually had been a volunteer in The Iceman nation. [01:10:11] Straight as I'm on it, but that was interesting thing about that is that as it went on, more and more women came for, as well as some heterosexual men. [01:10:22] Just no side. He he was chair of a trust, which ran [01:10:33] a naval exchange program. [01:10:36] And he said to me, I the time I didn't have a job, and they said, we're looking for a manager. [01:10:43] And would you be interested in I thought, well, not only [01:10:50] on you, but about IV drug is because I Roger told me. And I knew I'd been Chair of the first board in 97. So I gave a new grant. [01:11:03] And so I said, Okay, I'll give it a go for a couple years. [01:11:09] And I stayed on [01:11:12] until it was it was like 1998, get it, right. [01:11:21] Yes. [01:11:24] And then I decided that's, I got bored with that. Because it was, I put things in place with running pretty well. With getting more and more clients, I mean, the whole thing is drying. [01:11:39] And I've been involved in the national organization as well, a little exchange program. [01:11:44] So I resigned, and another opportunity came along, which meant I had to take care of some at risk people in Christchurch, and became team leader for an organization rich, clear for this week. There's people who are HIV positive, [01:12:06] the depth two years. [01:12:10] Now let's change the program. [01:12:13] So was that a word again, and then the position of manager for this foundation camera. [01:12:24] So in the 2000s, now, how had the HIV AIDS landscape changed, and your opinion [01:12:34] actually changed. [01:12:36] And it changed for speaking from here, [01:12:40] it has changed quite radically. [01:12:43] Not the situation itself, but the way that was being handled. [01:12:48] You see, when you look at it, in 19, we had 220 volunteers doing various activities. When I went away, [01:12:59] it was all closed down. [01:13:02] Except for the clinic at Raptor was called it which provide counseling and support services. [01:13:10] So there was a group of support people [01:13:13] and a person provide a man employed and manage managing prevention education. That was [01:13:23] the whole organization had been directed down. [01:13:28] For the national managers have been appointees, all the funding went through Rockland. [01:13:36] And the ultimate goal. [01:13:39] So when I came back in 2000, [01:13:47] it was a different organization, [01:13:50] it was very much was focusing on support is to have your one prevention education officer who had to do the whole area safwan. [01:14:04] And if this really was all support, [01:14:08] and show there were obviously more people who required support. [01:14:14] But I did find it difficult, I [01:14:18] suppose that was because of my background. [01:14:24] And when you say support, what would that mean practically for for somebody or [01:14:29] counseling, people with HIV counseling, [01:14:34] support themselves of medical, health area, [01:14:39] terms of accommodation, all those sorts of things are necessary for person with terminal disease, or potentially at a loss. because by then, of course, the treatments are come along, which made a huge difference in people and having a lot longer, but also presents more problems for this people. And I know Yeah, because of the fact that Richard copacetic medications and bouts of disease and stuff like that. [01:15:06] And also discrimination. So which hasn't changed a lot. [01:15:11] So I mean, it's, yeah, that was great. I mean, good things happening there. But I still was concerned about the lack of that community involvement in terms of education and prevention and stuff. And that support process, I mean, one person trying to do all that. [01:15:32] That was her industry. And it couldn't be done properly and still, same style. [01:15:40] Anyway, that's the way it was. And [01:15:43] I moved, I did some medical things, I suppose. Kristin good. And very well, some people. [01:15:52] The initial clinic when I was there was set up, we'd had a hospital board. We set up our own clinic initially, in conjunction with Hospital in those days, thinking all within political, they want total control, they wanted us to go through the STD clinic and all the rest of it. And I back off and I gotta take that report out. And we moved premises to life [01:16:18] a couple of apartments, ground floor panels are single there was two story panels together and they were in Washington State and their cash a [01:16:30] billion. And we set up actually on a panel called I was called the zero position route basically was the first one who handled condoms and things out to the troops little rest of it. So that was that was that was the clinic predicted some premises next door, a house for massage and treatment room. And that was a war the rest have gone. [01:16:59] So that what I left when I left 90, the whole thing of a clinic and it was [01:17:08] Yeah, so the organization had radically changed. [01:17:13] But what has happened in the meantime was they had gone and Lyft that premise in Montreal Street and move to process and hospital. [01:17:23] Well, that's okay. [01:17:27] When I got there, the first thing I found was that the offices and rooms are very small. They shared one large room with the administration for the sci fi downstairs, anyone the second floor or first floor everyone [01:17:44] which means anybody with any illness would have to gather climb those damn stairs. [01:17:51] The prevention room, prison had [01:17:55] permission pistol head would not have been much bigger in your kitchen. [01:18:03] small crew. Now the rooms were much better. [01:18:09] So I decided that we get out of it. I mean, had been called alohar assumption actually have been made for several years. And the previous previous two managers been quite happy. They're not as good [01:18:23] as what we got to go back to the community, we're not part of the hospital system. [01:18:28] Sure people go to the hospital they they see the specialist there, so forth, that doesn't happen every day. [01:18:38] So I hunted around four rooms around for building particularly a building with some characters on wants about because the hospital building discovery. [01:18:49] And so hundred rounds and found eventually after thinking run around by a few people was I knew who we were. And what is anyway, the question of finding the right building or the right owner found the right door eventually after five or six guys. And the right owner, the owner as it happened at a friend who in UK or dynamite he was pretty happy being his building. It was it was a I call it I am quite large old villa. And was very suitable because it had lots of stuff on the end. And a gun [01:19:37] shifted the AIDS Foundation of hospital to there, which actually turned out to be in Hereford Street. And next door was the City Mission. [01:19:50] Which I didn't think was any big deal. People in the City Mission go out at eight o'clock in the morning and come back in about five or six are elsewhere from nine until five life. So anyone that's coming in wouldn't need to having to live a city mission. But as it turned out, people would happy but the people were were not happy with the people never came to us anyway. [01:20:16] But the clients finally they seem to adopt and fine. It was fine. I mean, the booty was great. [01:20:22] Unfortunately, [01:20:24] we lost it. [01:20:26] But yeah, now they're, they're casual streets. [01:20:31] Yeah, so anyway, [01:20:33] um [01:20:37] I suppose my relationship with the foundation [01:20:41] had been quite good initially. And then after a while, I began to challenge things. [01:20:46] I came to crunch anyone acid, okay. My presenter Islam 10 or more resign. That's what I did. [01:20:55] So that was the underlying AIDS Foundation, the second one. [01:21:00] But I think now as our trivia something here. [01:21:06] I'm just wondering, finally, if you could tell me what impact HIV AIDS and the work that you've been doing has had on your life? How has it changed you has affected you. [01:21:22] And [01:21:25] now it's a lot more aware about social issues. [01:21:29] I'm still involved in the IV drug is as chair of the board, and also the national board. So I still got some retain some [01:21:44] interest in that area, not just because it's druggies, but because of HIV. [01:21:51] And [01:21:53] it's provided well personally, which provided a lot of skills with a lot of great people. [01:22:01] Yeah, I mean, a big education. [01:22:05] Plus, for me, as well, I mean, as all that awareness of those social issues. [01:22:16] Yeah, I mean, it's been very rewarding. [01:22:19] And also missing a lot of great people in terms of [01:22:26] all walks of life [01:22:30] and a chance to contribute something because we all [01:22:34] kind of go through life, particularly if you're self employed, something like that, and you're focused on what you're doing. probably have a great regard for what the rest of the world is doing around you. [01:22:49] I'm not saying that's a generalization. I'm just saying it can happen. [01:22:55] And that became rewarding in terms of being able to contribute. [01:23:01] Yeah.
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