The Kakuma refugee camp in northwestern Kenya is home to a large number of refugees and asylum seekers from different parts of Africa, including LGBTIQ individuals who have fled persecution in their home countries.
For many LGBTIQ refugees, Kakuma is not a safe place. We face discrimination, harassment and violence from other refugees as well as from the local community.
We have come out to amplify our voices to the world, hoping to raise awareness of the challenges we face and to advocate for our rights. We have organized ourselves into groups to support each other and demand better treatment from the authorities. However, our efforts have been met with resistance and hostility from some of the other refugees in the camp who view our sexuality as a threat to their cultural and religious values.
Many LGBTIQ refugees in Kakuma live in fear of being attacked or even killed because of our sexual orientation or gender identity. We are often forced to hide our true selves and live in isolation, unable to express ourselves or form meaningful relationships. Some have even been forced into marriages with people of the opposite sex against their will.
Despite the challenges we face, LGBTIQ refugees in Kakuma remain resilient and determined to fight for our rights. We have called on international organizations and governments to provide us with better protection and support, including access to healthcare and legal assistance. We hope that by speaking out, we can make a difference and create a better future for ourselves and others like us.
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