WE ENVISION A WORLD WHERE ALL PEOPLE ARE TREATED WITH RESPECT AND HUMAN RIGHTS ALIGN FOR ALL, EQUALLY. IT IS TIME TO End PREJUDICE AND VIOLENCE against LGBTQI+ people around the world!
AHRC provides advocacy, humanitarian services and resources for LGBTQI people in forced displacement: Over 70 countries around the world criminalize LGBTI people, of which over 30 are in Africa (including island nations.) Of the 7 countries that impose the death penalty, 4 are in Africa.
In these countries, the criminal codes and anti-LGBTQI dicta gives license for widespread persecution, currently at an all time high. While the draconian Colonial-era penal codes remain in effect, politicians, lawmakers, and religious leaders are calling for harsher punitive measures through more onerous legislation. This milieu is ripe for so called “mob justice”, sexual violence, public outings, evictions, firings, expulsions, banishment, blackmail, extortion, arrests, torture, assault, and even killings.
As a result, many members of Africa’s LGBTQI community are forcibly displaced, internally into hiding and in many cases flee their countries, seeking protection and refuge, as asylum seekers or refugees.
The African Human Rights Coalition (AHRC) works in an extremely complex environment, refugee led through the AHRC Ambassador Program, engaging with LGBTQI organizations, activists, groups and individual refugees in and from African countries, seeking solutions, protection and to claim and defend their human rights.
Advocacy, resources and direct services, we work:
To address anti-Queer sentiment, homophobia, transphobia, and xenophobia, as well as related individual case advocacy, forming coalition alliances locally, on the continent, and abroad
To provide fully comprehensive and ad hoc case management services for LGBTI individuals in forced displacement, asylum seekers and refugees, to include humanitarian assistance, referrals and resources
To advocate with key populations and health impact of 'rights at risk', and related issues
To support refugee-led initiatives, strategies and innovations
To advocate for renewed and appropriate infrastructures, innovative pipelines and advance pro-refugee sentiment
To provide country conditions reporting, expert witness testimony for asylum cases and to ediucate governments on these conditions.
AHRC's ultimate goal is to partner for change, in the hope Africa can return to its pre-Colonial time of acceptance of sexuality, so Africa's environment for LGBTI people advances the pursuit of freedom and happiness.
AHRC provides advocacy and humanitarian services to LGBTQI+ people in forced displacement:.
AHRC works to mitigate the following dire needs for LGBTQI people in Africa, through direct services and coalition building:
Safe shelter, food, medical assistance and related funding, to include funding for livelihood projects
Guidance about exile options in cases where such is the only option for safety and survival
Improved conditions and refugee registration and protection in hostile host countries
Asylum services such as living and legal resources, to include trauma informed counseling, housing, work, law and policy reform
LGBTQI+ refugees in UNHCR system - management for resettlement cases, communications, advocacy
Consulting, advocacy, awareness, country conditions reporting and expert testimony, for LGBTQI people in several African countries, to include Angola, Burundi, Ethiopia, Cameroon, DRC, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, The Gambia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
Melanie Nathan, Executive Director, has a hand on approach, directing all AHRC programs. Melanie was born in South Africa to a family that fled Eastern European Pogroms. Educated in South Africa, Melanie practiced law in South Africa, before immigrating to the United States. She is a renowned award winning human rights and LGBTQI equality advocate. She is a qualified country conditions expert witness in LGBTQI cases for LGBTQI+ asylum seekers from 15 African countries, providing expert testimony in the U.S and global courts. She lectures and speaks around the world on related issues. Melanie recently participated as a thematic workshop lead in the June 2021 UNHCR Roundtable for FORCIBLY DISPLACED LGBTQI+ People and provided the roundup keynote. She sat on the UNHCR monthly panel "Closing the Gaps" where the Global Roundtable recommendations were elucidated. Melanie also provided a closing keynote speech to the WorldPride and EuroGames, Copenhagen and Malmö Summit in August 2021, on Refugees, Borders & Immigration. More details can be found at Melanie's award winning blog: HERE and speakers page HERE .
Marc Hanuman Cohen, Director of Humanitarian Resources, Marc is engaged in directing humanitarian alliances and protection funding. Marc brings his many years of front line advocacy in the fight to preserve the quality of life for those living with HIV/AIDS, substance abuse & club drug interventions, his Global focus on LGBTI human rights advocacy, spearheading & supporting HIV & LGBT+ Programs with a focus on prevention, treatment access & human rights violations in Canada, US, Ghana & Uganda. In 1988 Marc began serving on the Board of Directors of University of Miami’s Community Alliance Against AIDS. In 1993, he Co-founded the Community AIDS Program on Miami Beach, serving as the Foundation's VP from 1993-97; then serving as President from 1997-2007.
AMBASSADORS: Refugee leaders in Kenya, Zambia, Malawi, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Cameroon, Ghana, Burundi: Names and BIO's are not public fro security reasons.
African HRC consists of a coalition of individuals, case managers, service providers, organizations, and African led ambassadors based all around the world.
AHRC is also led by Ambassadors who have lived experience, in and from several African countries and regions.
The names and images of AHRC Ambassadors are not displayed for security reasons to protect those who are still not living in fully protected and safe environments and situations.
However some courageously appear in public venues representing fellow refugees, for awareness and to participate as leaders, despite the risks involved, on a case by case basis.
An Example is this PRIDE MESSAGE VIDEO linked HERE, which includes a message from the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, Dr. Fillipo Grandi.
See African HRC work featured in Award winning documentary UNSETTLED at www.Unsettled.film
African HRC works with many partners in Africa, to directly link African LGBTI communities and individuals in crisis to support services, both in Africa and abroad. We form ad hoc coalitions, catered to specific advocacy situations and individual cases, as needed.
We maintain and value the privacy of organizations, which are unable to operate openly due to government criminalization.
We support and uphold the value of African LGBTI organizations and individual activists working around the world, through programs that directly connect organizations and individuals abroad to organizations and individual partners operating within Africa.
HOW DO I JOIN?
If you are an agency, organization, individual, or media outlet, and you would like to receive more information about AHRC and Coalition building please submit this form: