Kenya saw a number of events and project in celebration of the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia.
[box type=”note” ]We are still busy collecting information on this year’s IDAHOT activities and are waiting to hear back from activists and event organisers. If you have information to share with us, please write us at email@example.com[/box]
Q-Initiative, a LGB Youth organization in Kenya organised online campaigns against homophobia targeted to the queer youth from 10th to 17th May 2015. The campaigns aimed to post updates, anti-bullying messages and news from all over the world relating to IDAHOT several times a day.
Additionally, they will also print t-shirts, brochures and banners which will be distributed to the queer youth, their family members, partners and friends to pass on messages against homophobia. The banners will be hanging in their office, and at the Eldoret Youth Center from the 15th to 17th May.
There will be a public discussion on Homophobia and the Youth with leaders from the campus organizations and youth groups on the 16th of May.
To celebrate IDAHO they will also have a movie screening with the queer youth from Eldoret on the 17th May, followed by a cocktail session with family and friends of lesbians and gays.
Q-Initiative Eldoret is a group of queer students connected to the Moi University Eldoret who in 2011 started to create a network for LGB students. The have partners and collaborate with national and international organisations.
To find out more about the group you can visit their website.
A collaboration of various organisations in Kenya planned to develop a social media strategy around IDAHOBIT that could be shared and ask organisations to use around that time on social media (Fb, Twitter, e.t.c.), having messaging, pictures, captions and themed messaging to get the buzz around.
AFRA Kenya, a queer LBT women Art group prepared a NO HATE photography campaign. On IDAHOT they invited everyone to join them at a sports event in Nairobi, titled ‘Sport it Out’
Still in the spirit of IDAHOBT month, AFRA-Kenya planned a two in one day events: Pink viewing and Night of Mystery on the 31st of 05 2015 but unfortunately had to postpone the event due to unavoidable circumstances. The new date will be announced.
IDAHOT 2015 – Focus Issue to be LGBTI Youth
In Kenya, Suncity Africa Foundation with the support of PlanetRomeo Foundation and Eastern Africa Regional Youth Network hosted The International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT) at the Suncity Lounge as the day also was the official opening the first LGBT community lounge in Eastern Africa. The lounge serves as a safe space for GBLTQ to meet, connect, socialize and even find potential partners and get entertained with a touch of casual martinis to fabulous drag shows, a place for them to be themselves without the feeling of being discriminated.
The Lounge and IDAHOT 2015 “what’s in common?”
Looking at the current wave of discrimination and stigma going around Africa, where Kenya is not left out of the share by the mainstream society which have also over-flowed into the social places like bar, clubs and lounges seeing LGBT community not to be themselves and most of the times not welcomed, verbally or physically abused or thrown out of these social places for who they are. The result is a vicious cycle: lack of financial resources for setting up LGBT friendly spaces affects the quality of life and denies LGBT persons a fundamental right of freedom to association and protection, limiting them from reaching the broad community and the riches, diversity, uniqueness, character and tone in LGBT friendly space and the lives they portray are often overlooked.
The Suncity Lounge concept will address the above mentioned issues by providing a sanctuary and a safe space for LGBT to hang-out, connect and socialize, with a focus on edutainment, lifestyle, culture and slang that will bring a sense of community responsibility and a rite of passage with a loyalty and allegiance to a place which offers a much needed opportunity for self exploration.
The Lounge will not only be limited to “safe space” but also become an information hub, online STI clinic, LGBT Youth online magazine, Talk show, pride festival and legal centre. We are here to treat LGBT with the feeling of equal opportunities and freedom, by remodelling our monthly reunion parties into Private lounge using the concept of sports club system of members only model approach to access services that are not offered to LGBT community with other organizations who only focus on primary health and advocacy.
On 16th, May, 2015 we ushered in The IDAHOT through the campaign theme The Day of Pink Event not only to mark as the official opening of our doors to the members. Our community is a structured or founded on social gathering and being that on 17th being a Sunday, we decided to bring the LGBT new on the eve with more than 150 people celebrating diversity in a place and home where freedom is the order o the day.
Mr.Uchenna and Miss Rohilla were the MCs and host speakers for the night to make sure that the program is well followed. The event started from 9 pm with a curtain raiser by one of our only The Grammo Suspect of the all female group named I AM band singing one of her songs that is meant to pass a message to the community that it will all get better soon, such an encouragement to many.
We create a platform for our neighboring country Uganda asylum seekers living in Kenya to be at home away from home, through their Dance Crew who rocked the stage and captured the eyes of many through the Ugandan traditional dances.
The main aim to hosting such an event was to create free space with no charges for the members of the GBLTQ community to come and enjoy, get to socialize and learn various things including their right of association, the right to socialize, which was reached with a clear goal.
To keep the crowed entertained and get involved we introduced more artists to the stage and also some indoors games such as: spin the bottle, pick a letter plus organized a free photo session for everybody to make the day memorable.
Suncity Africa is currently fund raising to set-up a crisis center for LGBT youth who are in crisis or are homeless. They already have a facility which as part of the IDAHOT event was painted by young people. If you like to support them you can contact them at suncityafrica[at]gmail.com.
The Denis Nzioka News Agency and HOLA Africa! (an pan-African queer women collective) organised a social media campaign around and on IDAHOT.
We will be engaging queer African voices and personalities on homophobia, challenge stereotypes and interact as well as engage on conversation around homophobia online. We will prepare a social media toolkit that we will share with groups and persons who wish to engage in the debate.