At SolidarityNow we celebrate.
Along with Ahmed, N., Hassan and Baref, Maya and Batis, Hasanin, John and Pinar, we celebrate their right to self-determination and social inclusion.
Starting from today and till the 9th of June, when the Athens Pride 2018 takes place, through the #iAmStrong series, we unfold the stories of the LGBT refugees – beneficiaries of SolidarityNow.
“Biologically, physiologically, we do not differ very much from each other; but, as narratives, each one of us is unique.” * This belief is highlighted through the #iAmStrong , a set of unique personal narratives of LGBT people who do not differ from another person.
Refugees belonging to the LGBT community face double stigma. This double stigma makes them feel trapped and stigmatized. The last thing we want for the members of the LGBT refugee community in Greece is to give them another “label”. They have already suffered several impositions. Through #iAmStrong, we become their voice to make them sense the liberating power existing in expression and writing.
Furthermore, #iAmStrong suggests that these young people, who have often been hunted for what they are, are now leaving back the painful family stories, the abuse, the violence, the racism, the fear. All these, as they say, made the escape from their home countries the only option.
Refugees and members of the LGBT community in Greece are supported by SolidarityNow in their transition period at their new home – until they get asylum, learn the language, find work in Greece, make their own steps towards a new life.
In recent years, the lesbian, homosexual, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBT) communities have made a great progress worldwide on claiming rights and inclusion. However, in many countries, the members of the LGBT community still face discrimination and violence, which leads to social exclusion.
To start make the change, read their stories and get to know them…
* Oliver Sacks, “Ceci est ma femme”, 1985
**Through the Safe Refugee Program, SolidarityNow provides accommodation to refugees, in independent apartments in Athens and Thessaloniki. The program’s beneficiaries receive free psychosocial support, legal counseling, they participate in educational and recreational activities, and are members of a wider support network that aims to improve their living conditions and support them during their stay in Greece.
***The accommodation program is implemented by SolidarityNow and is part of the ESTIA Support Program for Integration and Housing of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and funded by the European Union Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO).