Cycles repeat until one person has the courage to say, ‘This stops with me.’
At My Fathers Barbers, Mataio (Matt) Faafetai Malietoa Brown offers men a haircut with a difference: a safe space to be seen and heard without judgement.
From his barbershop chair, Matt has inspired a new generation of New Zealand men to break free from the cycle of abuse — and those men have in turn inspired him and his wife, Sarah, to create the global anti-violence movement, She Is Not Your Rehab.
In this raw and unflinching book Matt shares his own story and those of his clients, of surviving family violence and abuse, and how they were able to find healing and turn their lives around. He introduces the people and concepts that have helped him heal, and gives readers the tools they need to begin their own journeys.
She is Not Your Rehab demonstrates the power of vulnerability and honesty in addressing pain and shame, and shows how anyone can empower themselves by taking responsibility for their own healing.
About the author:
Mataio (Matt) Faafetai Malietoa Brown is an internationally acclaimed barber and hair artist and the founder of My Fathers Barbers, the barbershop where men go to heal. His dedication to reviving the craft of barbering has seen him teach and demonstrate all over the world. While he’s cut everyone from All Blacks to members of Wu-Tang Clan, Matt believes his true calling is his work to redefine society’s view of masculinity — and to help end the cycle of domestic violence affecting families throughout the world.Matt, a New Zealander of Samoan descent, together with his wife Sarah (Ngapuhi/Te Rarawa), founded the anti-violence movement She Is Not Your Rehab.
In 2019, he outlined the kaupapa of She Is Not Your Rehab in a powerful TEDx Talk that continues to inspire today. Matt regularly collaborates with community and government organisations in New Zealand and abroad and hosts a men’s anti-violence support group from his barbershop, enabling men to access free therapy and support.
He is the creator and facilitator of a barbering programme taught in men’s prisons throughout New Zealand and a Corrections NZ patron. He is also an ambassador for the It’s Not OK campaign with the Ministry of Social Development. He was a 2020 Westfield Riccarton Local Hero and a finalist for the Kiwibank New Zealand Local Hero of the Year award. Matt and Sarah are proud parents to three and reside in Christchurch, New Zealand.