Glocal voices: What does pride mean to you?

News - 2022-06-28
International LGBTQI+ Pride Day has been celebrated for more than fifty years. But why is it celebrated? On July 5 we invited LGBTQI activists to talk about their struggle for social acceptance in Colombia, Argentina, Kenya and Myanmar.

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Get to know the panel

Juan Felipe Rivera Osorio (Colombia) is a lawyer from Los Andes University, specialising in Public Management and Administrative Institutions and has a Master's degree in Public Law for Administrative Management. He was one of the lawyers who accompanied Sergio Urrego's case before the Colombian Constitutional Court as part of Colombia Diversa. In 2021, he was LGBTI Fellow at the Atlantic Council's Foreign Policy. Currently, Juan Felipe is Colombia Diversa's Litigation Coordinator. 

Marcela Romero (Argentina) is a transfeminist activist and defender of the human rights of the trans people, Regional Coordinator of the Latin American and Caribbean Network of Trans people and president of the Association of Transvestites, Transsexuals and Transgender people of Argentina (ATTTA). In 2009 she received the "Outstanding Woman of the Year Award" from the National Congress and was the author of Argentina's Gender Identity Law. In 2017 Marcela Romero founded CASA TRANS in Buenos Aires, she is currently the director of this space and promotes projects for the creation and sustainability of Trans Houses throughout the region. 

Festus Kisa (Kenya) works with Q-Initiative, which is an LGBTQ+-led and LGBTQ+ serving organization, in Kenya. He is a Social Worker by training specializing in human rights, sexuality development, sexual reproductive health and rights, gender justice, violence prevention and response, HIV programming, mental health and wellness, and capacity building. He is a board member of Global MenEngage Alliance where he represents LGBTQ interests. He also seats in the Learning for Change Working group which is a learning space for SRHR actors in several countries across Europe, Africa, Asia and South America. 

Yaya Aye Myat (Myanmar) is a Christian Transgender woman of Karen ethnicity in Myanmar. She is a well-known facilitator for LGBT advocacy, behaviour change communication, civic education and networking training workshops. In 2016, Yaya founded the National Transgender People Alliance of Myanmar (NTPAM) and advocate for the rights of the transgender people together with other alliances at the national level until the 2021 coup. Following the coup, Yaya fled the country and resettled in Sweden. Yaya continues to advocate for the rights of the LGBT people in Myanmar who are suffering from violations from the brutal army and armed forces. Yaya is a board member for Women LEAD. 

Levi Karvonen (Sweden) International Communication Officer at RFSL, a board member of Sáminuorra (the Sámi youth organization) and the former vice president of RFSL Youth. RFSL is Sweden's oldest currently active LGBTQI organisation and a trusted international actor on LGBTQI issues. Our international work is extensive, and RFSL cooperates with LGBTQI organisations in East Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe. We also organise training on UN advocacy, human rights and sustainable development for LGBTQI activists from all over the globe. RFSL strives to create an equal world where all LGBTQI people’s human rights are respected and no one is left behind. Levi is moderating the session.

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