Through these stories being told, we have been inspired to put together a collection of stories from several LGBTIQ+ self-identifying people of faith. The stories will be placed in a booklet format and remain unedited. We will make this available in both printed version and on our website. We thank all contributors to this booklet and for inviting the world into each of their journeys. We know that these stories will ignite hope and inspiration in many LGBTIQ+ people’s lives as well as allies who are grappling with the inclusion and acceptance of all people as they are. There is a sneak peek of one of the shared stories later on in this newsletter.
We have put more emphasis of investing in people in this programme. Through this investment GIN continues to grow and strengthen partnerships with like minded individuals and organisations across the globe. Southern Africa has been a good learning opportunity for us and we are taking these important lessons to other parts of the world. We have begun conversations with partners in Canada, Fiji and the Caribbean region in order to begin linking hands and contributing to change within spaces of faith. Keep your eyes peeled for more information on this exciting space in our next newsletter in early 2022!
In August this year, the programme led a side event, the Interfaith Pre-conference at the Pan African ILGA Conference. The pre-conference invited speakers and guests to a virtual space of active engagement, knowledge sharing and shifting the paradigm of propelling change in the hearts and minds of religious communities. The space was well attended by a number of GIN partners, members, allies and friends. The event was moderated by Oumaima Dermoumi and Yvette Abrahams. Read more about the reflections from the PAI Conference 2021.
In October we held the largest and longest co-partnered event in our programme. Under the strict rules of engagement during the Covid-19 pandemic we seized the moment on an idea we co-created with The Norwegian LGBT Association (FRI) and Focissa Health and Gender Justice Network (FHGJN). We held a Regional Capacity Engagement meeting. The meeting was held in Durban, South Africa. LGBTIQ+ individuals and Council of Churches representatives were invited from Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, Malawi, Mozambique and South Africa. The space ran over two weeks and covered technical parts of our regional partnership as well as capacity building for country partners so that they may be better equipped to implement activities in their countries. We included the importance of working together and ensuring that we do our best to leave no one behind. Sustainability was also a central part of the discussion as we looked at avenues of funding and other forms of resources that we could turn to as partners trying to do such huge work. The space definitely strengthened our partnerships and opened our minds to the potential which we have in uniting within our differences and healing through a process of building understanding.
Watch the videos here.
Our programme did not go unharmed by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. We are grateful to our funders and partners during this year for their flexibility, agility and adaptability during this year. We continue to hold in our hearts the many more lives that have been lost in the name of faith and we use these untold stories to continue to fuel our ambitions in creating new dimensions for dialogue.