- Change Agent
Ma Hnin Yee Htun Win was born in Myanmar and moved to Melbourne in 2002 as a refugee. She is a change agent with a deep ability to push boundaries and forge new paths. In 2015, Ma Hnin returned to Myanmar and opened a bar, Father's Office. A controversial move for a woman in ultra-conservative Myanmar, Father’s Office quickly became an inclusive space where cultural and gender divides were dismantled.
In 2020, Ma Hnin created a community art space in Yangon to nurture young creatives and youth subcultures including punks, artists, rappers, musicians, digital creators, the LGBTQI+ community and more.
When the Tatmadaw military took back control of Burma in February 2021, Ma Hnin looked after young protesters. She provided safety, support and sustenance as well as mental health support to help people address trauma brought about by the takeover. Ma Hnin secured funding which enabled six hundred youth protesters to learn first aid and self-defence.
After being forced to leave Myanmar in 2021, Ma Hnin continues to support young artists, activists and other critical voices who have fled Myanmar. She has built connections between youth and LGBTIQ+ communities from Myanmar in Australia, Thailand, UK and Europe. She founded the collective A NEW BURMA, which has toured exhibitions in three continents, raising money and much-needed attention for creators back home.