Michael Mahkwa Auksi is an Ojibway-Estonian man who grew up in Toronto. His dad is from Lac Seul First Nation and his mother was born in Tallinn, Estonia (just south of Finland). He is delighted to be on board with the Gen 7 Messenger program and is excited to have the opportunity to promote sport and recreation among Aboriginal Youth.
“I never had the most strength or speed and I was never a prospect. What I did have were my cultures, a tireless work ethic and the blind obsession to be my best. Whatever your passion is, do it for the love, the joy and do it because it’s your thing.”
Michael Mahkwa Auksi is an Ojibway-Estonian man who grew up in Toronto. His dad is from Lac Seul First Nation and his mother was born in Tallinn, Estonia (just south of Finland). He is delighted to be on board with the Gen 7 Messenger program and is excited to have the opportunity to promote sport and recreation among Aboriginal Youth. Mike believes that the promotion of sport and recreation alone is not enough. Instead, he has adopted a model that encompasses the four parts of self (the mind, the body, the spirit and emotional self). Through sport and recreation, he hopes to empower youth to find their own passion…
Mike’s passion has always been the game of hockey. He was fortunate to have a super hockey mom who rode the public transit system with him all across Toronto. Growing up Mike was unsure of his place in the world as an Ojibway-Estonian person. As a result, Mike got mixed up in alcohol, cannabis and cigarette smoking. In the winter of 2002, at his lowest point, his Dad suggested he travel up to Lac Seul and nearby Sioux Lookout. Mike is very thankful for his dad’s suggestion (love you man). That winter had been the first time in a long time that Mike had actually felt good about himself. Today, Mike is sober and smoke-free and he has his parents, his cultures, his friends and the game of hockey to thank.
Mike attended the Transitional Year Programme at the University of Toronto and cracked the Varsity Blues line-up as a walk-on. However, after completing two more years of an Aboriginal Studies degree, he continued to be a “healthy scratch” most nights. As a result, Mike decided to transfer to Ryerson University and pursue a Bachelor of Social Work. He got his wish and finally was able to play at the university level. In fact, in the last game of the season, Mike scored the shootout-winning goal against the Varsity Blues at Varsity Arena! He enjoys reflecting on how 8 years of dedication went into an 8 second play.
Mike decided to take the 2010-11 year off school to pursue pro hockey in the Czech Republic. However, due to poor management and bankruptcy, he was forced to return home. He grieved a great deal, but not for too long. Leaving the Czech Republic opened the door for Mike to join the Gen 7 Messenger Program and he knows this is where he is supposed to be.
Mike will be returning to Ryerson to complete his Bachelor of Social Work in the fall of 2011.
Sport and recreation has been instrumental in Mike’s healing journey. He feels that everyone should have the opportunity to participate. His intentions are to approach his work in a humble and respectful manner and allow the Youth to be the driving force on their own journey of health and well-being.
Messenger Links & Testimonials
Michael Mahkwa Auksi |Let's Be Healthy Together
Mike Genseven - on Facebook
Michael Auksi on hockeydb.com
Practice makes perfect for GEN7 Messenger Michael Auksi
Michael Auksi's profile on EuroHockey.com
YouTube - GEN7 Messenger Michael Auksi in Gull Bay First Nation
Michael Auksi featured in Tibaachimowin, Lac Seul First Nation publication
GEN7 Messenger Michael Auski plays video games & works out
Michael Auksi plays hockey on a backyard ice rink
GEN7 Messenger Mike Auksi plays with youth in Gull Bay