“CELEBRATING 20 YEARS OF FARUG. THE BRAVES IN A STORM’’

The Uganda Lesbian Forum, first held in 2019, continues to provides a safe space for Lesbians, Bisexual and Queer womxn to meet and reflect on selves and the movement they are building, to collectively attempt healing from personal and collective traumas, and to focus on their wellbeing. From movement building to collective love, care, healing and to the third UGALEF 2023 that happened on the 1 -3 November under the theme of celebrating 20 years of FARUG convening over 65 LBQ womxn from different region, diversity.  It was delight that this convening had womxn from across the East African region, which is a mark of a growing collective LBQ movement. Convening amidst the Anti-Homosexuality Law is set to be a brave in a storm as one of the participants expressed.

                  “We have been meeting virtually for such a long time, here we are in person…am so happy.”

The three days convening explored different sessions and each section addressed different objectives. Day one was centered on Claiming Space as Feminists: Intersectionality and Feminist Approaches to Life and Organizing; Establishing a baseline of commitment to feminist principles, Discussion of Patriarchy and its impact on Lesbians and reflection on the African Feminist Charter.

 

 

 

 

Day two encompassed Faithful Catholic Souls and Women of Faith in Action as part of the LBQ organizations in the space blending the conversation on Spirituality, faith and its impact on mental health and wellness in regards to Bodies, Minds and Holistic Health and how to survive as LBQ womxn in a lesbophobic and misogynistic world.

This day was another opportunity for the participants to Ask the Doctor on Sex and Pleasure; Talking about consent and what it means for sex to be safe and pleasurable, there was a gynecologist in attendance to pitch any questions that womxn had about their practicalities of SRHR. Menopause, Aging, uterine conditions like fibroids and what is SRHR without a frank conversation led by the facilitator, Godiva on Drugs and Alcohol use within LBQ communities.

The immersed conversation further shifted to Impacts of Anti-Rights Movements and Anti Homosexuality Act on Present-day LBQ organizing in Uganda; in this session, participants shared how their lives and work in support of the LBQ community has been impacted by the passing of the Anti-Homosexuality Act in Uganda and the growth of a well-resourced anti- rights movement;

 

 

 

 

 

So amidst a lesbophobic country, how do then LBQ womxn live safe and fulfill their lives, day three was Navigating the law to empower and protect LBQ womxn, ensuring their children, property is not taken away from them, how well to manage money make investments, planning and strategizing for the future and the movement,

In the motion of the conversation, the three days did not go without fun, laughter, challenges such as the competitive Zumba dance, handcrafting like beading; individuals got to make their own bracelets, anklets and waist beads, this was another platform for LBQ womxn to market and share their small micro businesses. Finally as closing remarks, Godiva the lead facilitator of UGALEF 2023 re-echoed the need to identify and prioritize LBQ movement needs going forward as individuals and organizations and above all UGALEF as a Foundation for strategizing.

A moment of pictures and gifting as one of UGALEF’s package as we celebrate 20 years of resilience.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Join our 20 years celebration at BaQueer Twogere youtube channel FARUG@20– where every listen is a step towards a more inclusive tomorrow!”

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