I feel like my social consciousness and voluntary work are probably my best qualities.
I studied and worked as a junior architect in the architectural field for 7 years. It led to my first voluntary role through Habitat for Humanity in Borneo.
It became an apparent passion when I started volunteering for Habitat for Humanity in 2008 overseas in South-East Asia. Locally, I helped with a build for Habitat in Wellington a few years back for a family of refugees. Since then, Nepal has been on my list to go for Habitat. My proudest moment would have to be 5 years ago when I volunteered my time to design a communal space converting a church into school for orphans in South Africa.
During this interim, I have given my time volunteering for the New Zealand AIDS Foundation (NZAF) and for the Love Your Condom (LYC) campaigns in Wellington. Just recently, NZAF has invited me to be a part of their national campaign coming out in May this year which was both an experience and journey like no other. They have become my extended family or whānau and have been for the last 4 years.
The integral part of Kiwi life that adds a unique & dynamic experience is most definitely the Māori culture. I have experienced this amazing beauty when I have joined a takatāpui community group based in Wellington called Tiwhanawhana that welcomes people of diverse sexualities and gender identity that builds its community, telling its stories and leaving a legacy that will inspire others through different threads; Kapa Haka, Advice, Advocacy, Support of LGBTI+ Community.
We have recently performed at our parliamentary opening in celebration of New Zealand’s 30th Anniversary of the Homosexual Law Reform and the opening of our capital’s pride fair & festival Out in the Park & Wellington Pride Festival.
I happened to be the Volunteer & Community Engagement Liaison for Out in the Park, the New Zealand’s capital annual pride fair & festival. The role was to engage & bring diverse divisions of the LGBTQI groups & communities together to increase inclusiveness & organizing volunteers throughout the fair & festival.
This year was particularly memorable as it marked the 30th anniversary of the Homosexual Law Reform and the Pride Fair in Wellington.
I am firm believer of the importance of social consciousness and an advocate for social voluntary work within & outside our LGBTQI+ community. It means a great deal for me to voice the benefits of it to a wider community outside of New Zealand on the world stage.
As a man of action rather than words, just being a part of the Mr Gay World has already allowed me to engage more with other diverse queer communities worldwide. I am definitely looking forward to the experience, forming networks & further engagements with other respected recipients in Malta. May the best role-model win!
You can vote for me here.
Video Producers: Alexander Kachfi and Anthony Walton from New Zealand AIDS Foundation | Te Tūāpapa Mate Āraikore o Aotearoa.
Last Updated on Apr 1, 2016