Martin was born in Tāmaki Makaurau and grew up on Onetangi Beach on Waiheke Island. He grew into adulthood under the watchful eyes of Parahaki (the maunga he identifies with) and Hātea (the awa he identifies with) in Whangarei. Mania has also had extremely significant influences for him. He has recently found in tikanga a resonance with his life, both his difficulties and successes. He’s a weekend warrior, enjoying kayaking and cycling to keep well. His life, by his own admission, is deeply grounded in spirituality.
Martin is an individual who wishes to acknowledge his own experiences of mental distress, addiction and incarceration, but also his sustained period of wellness. He credits his wellness to a variety of personal and professional relationships that have supported his re-positioning in his communities. Martin is quick to acknowledge that he has been extremely fortunate and that some on a similar path are nowhere as fortunate. That’s his primary motivation for his involvement in He Ture Kia Tika – to change the landscape so there is an equity of opportunity for everyone at the intersection of justice and health. See how he thinks storytelling will contribute to systemic change of our systems below:
Martin works part-time as a clinical lecturer at the National Addiction Centre at the University of Otago. Recently, he has become full-time national consumer advisor for the Salvation Army across their Addiction, Supportive Accommodation and Reintegration and Palliative Care Services (ASARS). Education has been, and remains, a gateway for positive changes in Martin’s life, and he supports others engaging in tertiary study by way of mentoring from a similar background.
Martin is proud of his involvement with the project and fiercely protective of the well-being of those others likewise involved.