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Haera ra Maihi Makiha

Wed 3 Jul 2013 In: Hall of Fame View at NDHA

Ka kitea i konei tōna toa, tōna mātau, tōna pukumahi, te kaha hoki o ōna whakaaro ki te titiro atu i ngā āhuatanga katoa kei mua i te aroaro e takoto ana mai. Tenei te mihi atu kia koe. Kei te mihi kei te mihi kei te mihi.* One of the real characters of the New Zealand AIDS Foundation, Maori community engagement coordinator Maihi Makiha, is heading off overseas, leaving some rather big shoes (stilettos in fact!) to fill. His team leader Jordan Harris shares a few choice memories and invites you all to come to Maihi’s fab farewell! How sad are you to see Maihi go? I first met Maihi when he was still in high school, I did a HIV workshop and afterwards he told me he wanted my job, years later he got it and what a good choice that was. He has become a great advocate a great leader and loved by his community. He will be hugely missed, I personally feel like I’m losing a child but like any parent I am also happy to see him leaving following his dreams. How hard will it be to fill his shoes? Maihi does leave big shoes to fill but I know from experience that our community is full of people with big feet, they may not want to wear the stilettoes she leaves behind though. With Hamish Milne, at the Big Gay Out. What have been some of his biggest achievements, in your opinion? Maihi has achieved so much in the time he has spent with us, he has increased our takatāpui membership. Increased awareness and has taken the Love Your Condom message up and down the country, sometimes as a boy, sometimes as a girl but always with a box of condoms. Some of the highlights for me have been Hui Takatāpui. You just need to ask anyone who has attended the Hui, they will tell you how amazing he is. The last Hui was at his own marae and I will never forget the look on the participants faces when Maihi and his family took us all down to the beach to ride their wild horses. “That’s how we do’s it up here” he would say and later he had us all picking pipis for tea that night. Our city queer community just don’t get opportunities like that. Maihi brought a bit of rural life to the city and I know he will be taking a bit us with him when he leaves. What are some of your favourite Maihi moments? The thing we will miss most around the office is Maihi’s loud mouth, it’s a quiet day when he ain’t in the office. You always know when he’s on the phone you will hear….guuuurrrrlll….kia ora bowie….boooooosssssh and the list goes on. It’s like having a drag queen on heat on steroids on a megaphone. I’m going to really miss that. Can you tell us about the farewell plans? Maihi’s official farewell, in accordance with Māori tikanga will be a handing back to his family process called a Whakanuia: Date: Saturday July 13th 2013 Time: 1.30pm -4pm Venue: Central City Library, Lorne St, Auckland - Whare Wānanga Level 2 Feel free to join us if you would like to be there to say goodbye to Maihi. Miss Dynah Thyrst, with Paul Heard. Later that night we say goodbye to his alter ego Miss Dynah Thyrst at the Takatāpui Matariki event on K’ Rd which is being put on by the Takatāpui community it’s also a fundraiser for Hui Takatāpui 2014 and from what I’ve been told its sold out already. Looks like everyone wants to have one more party with Maihi before he leaves for Melbourne. *To mark Maori Language Week, Harris wrote a farewell for Maihi in Te Reo for us to share. with Jordan Harris - 3rd July 2013

Credit: with Jordan Harris

First published: Wednesday, 3rd July 2013 - 1:00pm

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