#IDAHOT - Stories from LGBTI Youth across the Federation

#IDAHOT2015 - Stories from LGBTI Youth across the Federation

Stories from LGBTI Youth across the Federation

'LGBTI Youth' is the focus of this year's International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia

The IPPF Sexual Diversity Network has published a compilation of stories to mark the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT).

In recognition of this year's global campaign focus on ‘LGBTI Youth’, these stories highlight the commitment of the IPPF Member Associations that directly support and uphold the sexual rights of young people of diverse sexual and gender identities, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) young people.

The broad breadth of their work include partnering with the LGBTI community, including young people; creating safe spaces for LGBTI young people; making services accessible and appropriate for LGBTI young people; and increasing public awareness and advocacy of LGBTI issues, including comprehensive sexuality education.

Each story is from the voice of a young person involved in the Member Association's work with LGBTI youth, and describes the impact this support has had on their lives, as well as other young people.

Borislav is a 22-year-old gay man living in Sarajevo. Bosnia and Herzegovina is a country with deep-rooted patriarchal values in many segments of society, very resistant to change, especially when it comes to sexual orientation. Association XY provides services to marginalized populations, including LGBTI individuals.

Read about how Borislav received the support he needed to get his confidence back

Wilfred's story

Wilfred is a 22-year-old gay activist in Cameroon, who worked as a community organizer in the organization Affirmative Action. He is involved in a project by the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW) as psychosocial adviser for other LGBTI youth.

Read about how Wilfred is standing up to aggression in Cameroon

Tharika's story

Tharika is a young transgender woman aged 19 years from a remote village of Tamil Nadu. She was supported by the Family Planning Association of India (FPAI) addressing needs of the transgender community by providing a comprehensive package of SRH and HIV services, including gender transition.

Read about how Tharika received the support she needed to reunite with her family

Danish is a 23-year-old from Indonesia. While the criminal code does not prohibit same sex relations, traditional values influence disapproval of the LGBTI community. He is a staff member of the Indonesian Planned Parenthood Association (IPPA) involved in youth programming.

Read about how Danish is confronting religious opposition in Indonesia

Maher's story

Maher is a 20-year-old man living in Morocco. Same-sex sexual activity is illegal in Morocco and can be punished by imprisonment. Maher accessed services provided by the Association Marocaine de Planification Familiale (AMPF), and is now an active member of the youth committee.

Read about how Maher received stigma-free services in Morocco

Erin's story

Erin from Syracuse, New York, has been a member of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) for nearly five years. Prior to joining PPFA, Erin was a local campus organizer at Syracuse University working closely with Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York.

Read about Erin's fight to defend the rights of young LGBTI people in USA

Kisaakye's story

Kisaakye lives in Kampala, and has an intersex-related condition. Reproductive Health Uganda (RHU) organizes sexuality sessions targeting university students, inclusive of sexual and gender diversity, to dispel myths and ignorance. Kisaakye shares her story in these sessions to raise awareness of intersex issues.

Read about how Kisaakye realized she was not alone in Uganda

Vassilis' story

Vassilis is an openly gay man from Cyprus, where he volunteered and worked for the Cyprus Family Planning Association (CFPA). Conservative values have a significant influence over public opinion in Cyprus when it comes to LGBTI rights. Vassilis is an intern at the IPPF European Network office.

Read about Vassilis' experience of gender and social norms in Cyprus

All young people, including young lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender & intersex people, have the right to grow up in safe and welcoming environments, where they can develop their personalities and talents respectfully of their individualities.

This right is guaranteed under international human rights law, however young people are specifically at high risk of being exposed to homophobic, transphobic or biphobic attitudes and expressions within the family, educational institutions, the health system, and social settings.

Health issues are also an area of concern for young LGBTI people, including sexual and reproductive health. Often information and services are not inclusive of diverse sexual orientations or gender identities, denying access to the information and support required to maintain health and well-being. Young transgender and intersex people face particular challenges, including access to appropriate treatment.

For more information about IDAHOT: