Kuchu Times: Uganda Pride seeks support

Uganda-based Kuchu Times reports:

Celebrating Pride Uganda in 2014. (Photo courtesy of Twitter and PinkDotSG)
Celebrating Pride Uganda in 2014. (Photo courtesy of Twitter and PinkDotSG)

Uganda Pride 2015 Coordinator Seeks Support

Pride Uganda, which is in its fourth year running,  is part of the annual international celebration of achievements for the movement of lesbians, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer, questionable, and gender non-conforming persons.

Kuchu Times’ George Barasa and Ambrose Barigye caught up with Richard Lusimbo, a researcher at Sexual Minorities Uganda and one of the organizers of the 2015 Pride Week and he revealed why this year was dedicated to showing the solidarity within the community.

As is tradition, a series of activities such as a talent show, exhibition, parade and the much-anticipated Mr and Miss Pride have been organized for the week-long event that will run from Aug. 5 to Aug. 9.

Also included on the list of activities are sensitization campaigns that will cover health, legal and social issues that affect not only the community but also its allies and families.

However, due to the current global economic situation, the organizing committee  is experiencing financial hardships and is calling upon community members, well-wishers and allies to combine efforts to make this year’s event successful.

“We can only make Pride 2015 a success if we pull resources and put up a magnificent week-long event. This is a celebration that gives us an opportunity to not only interact but also own who we are. I believe it is only right that we give it our all,” Lusimbo asserted.

The theme this year is “We are Family” and when asked how this was derived, Lusimbo said, “We need family for support; friends and relatives mean a lot to us and we should not give up on them. When we have family to watch our backs, no one can intimidate us well knowing we have someone to protect us.” …

Richard Lusimbo (Photo courtesy of Hivos.org)
Richard Lusimbo (Photo courtesy of Hivos.org)

Lusimbo was outed twice by a local tabloid in Uganda and went through a hard time as he struggled to explain to his family and friends about the newspaper article that had been titled “How I Became Homo’.

His is not the only story of this kind as many LGBTI persons have been forced to come out of the closet after being outed in one way or another. Some have even been denounced by their families and the only family they know now is the community.

”Our lives revolve around many things; we work, study and live in Uganda and no matter how far we go, at the end of the day we go back to where we were born. This community is now our family and even more for those who have been rejected by their biological families,” he said.

Besides celebrating one another and the bonds shared within the LGBTI community, Lusimbo exerts that Pride 2015 is a reminder that in time, gay rights will be respected and families by same-sex or transgender parents will be honored.

“A day will come when I will have a boyfriend and there will come a time when I will get a husband and have children.  It is something I always think about,” Lusimbo emotionally said.

Pirate-style party-goers at Uganda Pride. (Photos courtesy of Facebook)
Pirate-style party-goers at Uganda Pride 2014. (Photos courtesy of Facebook)

Pride Uganda has taken a stride this year with a change of leadership as founding coordinator Kasha Jacqueline stepped down  to pave the way for a new team.

“I am excited to see Pride Uganda grow and new leaders come on board. I am even more honored to have brought Pride closer to home and to see that the community has fully embraced it,” Ms Kasha said when asked about her thoughts on this year’s event.

Pride 2015 is an invite only event that will take place in an undisclosed location for security purposes. However, invited guests are free to invite their trusted friends.

You can also be part of year’s Pride by sending contributions through Mobile Money number under the  name Nabagereka Fiona  +256 (0) 780334192. Our partners outside Uganda can use this service through www.worldremit.com.

For more information, email: prideuganda@gmail.com.


Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. After his retirement from paid newspaper work in 2011, he launched Erasing 76 Crimes and helped with the Spirit of 76 campaign that assembled a multi-national team of 26 LGBTI rights activists to advocate for change during the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July 2012. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, including the Erasing 76 Crimes news site and the African Human Rights Media Network. Contact him via Twitter @76crimes or by email at info@76crimes.com. Mailing address: 21 Marseille, Laguna Niguel CA 92677 USA.

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