In Kenya, the existing criminal sanctions against expression of same gender love inform public attitudes and opinions towards same-sex relationships or those who do not conform to gender norms. As in other social issues, this discrimination and violence affects lesbian, bisexual, queer, trans* diverse and gender nonconforming persons differently because of patriarchy and sexism. Because Womxn program is an LBQ trans*diverse and non-binary steered initiative that seeks to fight against discrimination in terms of opportunity and the creation of safe spaces in Kenya. Because Womxn addresses a gap within leadership and organizing safe spaces for and by LBQ trans* diverse and non-binary persons. Based on a feminist analysis of power and equality, the program is keen to ensure full representation of non-hetero, non-cis and non-binary and non-men bodies within advocacy and the greater equality movement.
- Monthly Forums held in Nairobi to address the unique needs of lesbian, bisexual, queer women and non-binary persons. Our forums increase civic awareness and create a space for discussion and programming around safety and security, health and wellness. — Over 2017, Because Womxn decentralized to other counties that is Eldoret and Mombasa, and attracted a huge turn out of LBQ GNC and trans*diverse persons.
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- Bw was decentralized in 2017, and expanded to other regions to meet the needs of other constituents. We have covered these regions, Kitale, Uasin Gishu, Nakuru, KIambu, malindi, msa, Machakos County, Kajiado, Siaya, Migori, Kwale county, Kilifi County, Meru County, Nyeri County, Busia County,
There was a BW AGM done in 2019
Because Womxn Uzima Camp was pioneered in 2017. The annual camp brings LBQ trans*diverse / non-binary persons from across the country to a central place to create networks, build capacity and ensure that knowledge and programs are tailored to ensure the needs of the members are met
The 1st one was held from 1st to 4th June 2017 in Nyeri County and had 25 LGBTQ participants. The camp created an unparalleled space for learning, sharing, and knowledge building.
The curriculum included a look into siblinghood and creating safe spaces, politics, autonomy and violence, Self-Care and Healing Justice, Finances and futures, Leadership and Innovative Advocacy, among others. This inaugural curriculum and camp were important in determining future Uzima Camp curricula and makeup and were key in informing the future structure and design of the camp
The 2nd Uzima Camp was held from August 4th to 7th, 2019 in Kirinyaga County and had 40 participants. The camp brought together LBQ/trans* diverse and non-binary persons from across the country to build capacity, create networks, and learn from one another.
There was a total of 23 participants in attendance, shortlisted from almost a hundred people who had sent applications. There were 7 facilitators who spearheaded the discussions and 5 staff members. The Camp’s focus was to elevate feminist leadership amongst various spaces occupied by womxn, as well as build networks towards a safer and more equitable community based on identified needs.
The 3rd Annual Uzima Camp was held on the 22nd to 26th of September 2021 in Kajiado County. We curated a safe space for 12 LBQ womxn & ITGNC persons selected from a pool of 88 applications representing the Coast, Kisumu, Eldoret, Bondo & Nairobi regions. Each of the 12 selected persons was picked on their contributions within the community, the spaces they are taking up, their commitment to elevate safe spaces, and their willingness to continue the movement’s work. This camp was unique because it was held during the COVID-19 pandemic and there were extra security measures taken including covid testing. The Camp’s focus was to build and elevate feminist leadership amongst various spaces occupied by womxn, increase the knowledge and practices for wellness by participants, and Co-create effective interventions that eliminate discrimination and violations against LBQ trans*diverse / non-binary persons.
The 4th Annual Uzima Camp was held from the 3rd to the 7th of November 2022 in Nakuru County, with 17 LBQ women & ITGNC persons participating selected from a pool of 113 applications and representing Kilifi, Kisumu, Eldoret, Kiambu, & Nairobi regions. The cohort was designed to have as many young people as possible; the youngest participant was 19 years old. The Camp’s focus was to equip young and emerging queer women with the skills and knowledge to take up space in the movement.