The African Queer Youth Initiative team consists of young leaders from diverse backgrounds across Africa. With our experience, diverse skills and knowledge, we advance the mission and vision of AQYI. We are youth leaders, young professionals, grassroots activists, artists and above all, human beings passionate about human rights. The team consists of a volunteer network of youth from Botswana, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Kenya, Liberia, Morocco, Nigeria, Republic of Mauritius, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

Amanda Bosco

AMANDA BOSCO

Country: Uganda
Pronoun: She, Her
Amanda is a youth activist and human rights defender. She is a peer educator for the Uganda Youth and Adolescents Health Forum and is currently a part-time advocacy officer at Transgender Equality Uganda. Amanda is also a civic YALI graduate. She also volunteers with the Youth Coalition for Sexual and Reproductive Rights and the UN women informal reference group on LGBTI issues. 

Amavi Ayité Sitou

AMAVI AYITÉ SITOU (JEAN PAUL)

Country: Togo
Pronoun: He, Him
Jean Paul, based in Togo, is a young activist and independent consultant in project management. Jean Paul is the executive director of the Togolese Association for Abandoned Women (ATFA), an association for the prevention of STI/HIV where he coordinates all the projects. AFTA intervenes in the field of art and culture as an advocacy tool for the defence of women’s rights and in particular key populations.

Belyse Ange

Belyse Ange

Country: Burundi
Pronoun: She, Her
Bélyse is an African LGBT activist who works at the Movement pour les Libertés Individuelles (MOLI) as an Executive Assistant. MOLI’s objective is to build African societies free from discrimination and stigmatisation. Ange is also a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow. She strongly believes that all humans are equal and therefore there should be no discrimination and stigmatisation in societies.

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boye black

Country: Nigeria
Pronoun: He, Him
Boye is the founder of The Rustin Times, an online publication aimed at changing the narrative around LGBT persons on the continent. He is an experienced broadcast journalist with vast experience in online media. He is passionate about equality and continues to not only write about LGBT issues but volunteers with organisations dedicated to the fight for equality.

Dumiso Gatsha

dumiso gatsha

Country: Botswana
Pronoun: He, Him
Dumiso is the founder of Success Capital Organisation, an emerging grass-roots, nationally operating young sexual minority led NGO in Botswana. Dumiso has served in multiple civil society roles with focus on HIV Prevention, youth LGBTIQ+ representation, advocacy and research. Dumiso’s experience includes working for PWC, GIZ, Zurich, UNDP and as a national consultant under the regional SOGIR Project.

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Esmeralda Armandine

Country: Togo
Pronoun: She, Her, He, Him
Esmeralda is a young Togolese activist working as volunteer at the Togolese Association for Abandoned Women (ATFA) as assistant accountant since 2013. ATFA works in the field of art and culture as a tool for advocacy and for the defence of human rights, women and in particular the key population. She is also a professional basketball player and enjoys traveling, swimming, reading, etc.

Fokeerbux Najeeb Ahmad

FOKEERBUX Najeeb Ahmad

Country: Republic of Mauritius
Pronoun: N/A, He, Him
Najeeb, a young, queer activist from Mauritius, has worked with the African Queer Youth Initiative since 2016. Najeeb is also the founder and president of the Young Queer Alliance (YQA), a NGO working for LGBT youth in Mauritius. Previously, Najeeb held positions of responsibility in various organisations and has recently joined the Youth Reference Group (YRG) of the Men who have Sex with Men Global Forum (MSMGF).

Ifeatu Nnaobi

IFEATU NNAOBI

Country: Nigeria
Pronoun: She, Her
Ifeatu combines digital media and technology to challenge social inequality. She does this through new media projects, including short impact films, mini-documentaries, text, and Video Art. She has an LLB Law with International Relations degree from the University of Sussex and a Masters in International Public Policy from University College London. She is very passionate about LGBT rights and is a Campaigner for All Out.

Irwin Iradukunda

IRADUKUNDA IRWIN

Country: Burundi
Pronoun: He, Him
Irwin, is a pan African and social justice activist based in Bujumbura, Burundi. His work focuses on youth, gender and sexuality issues in Africa. As the Director of Programs at the Movement pour les Libertés Individuelles, he covers a number of areas such as the rights of gender and sexual minorities and advocacy; security management & protection; and institutional strengthening & leadership development.

Jamal Malek

JAMAL MALEK

Country: Morocco
Pronoun: He, Him, They, Their 
Jamal, 26 years old, is a Moroccan Amazigh (Berber)  LGBTIQ+ gay activist. He is the one of the founders of Morocco’s first ever association to defend and stand up for sexual and religious minorities. Jamal is an English literature BA student at CADI AYYAD university of Marrakech-Morocco. He is also passionate about politics, culture, entrepreneurship, peace making and women studies.

Junior Basosila

Junior Basosila

Country: Democratic Republic of Congo
Pronoun: He, Him
Junior is an activist, researcher and human rights defender who works on LGBTI, gender and youth issues in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. As Executive Director of the Movement for the Promotion of Respect and Equality of Rights in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, he covers a number of LGBTI-related areas  through the research, documentation and advocacy and leadership development.

Karishma Kwofie

Karishma Kwofie

Country: Liberia
Pronoun: She, Her
Karishma self identifies as a transgender woman and a HIV-positive activist. She is the founder and Executive Director of the Transgender Network of Liberia working for the visibility of transgender people in West Africa and Liberia at large. Karishma is also a member of the International Trans Fund as GMP. Currently, she serves as the program coordinator of West African Trans Forum (WATF). 

Lasavanne Jürgen Soocramanien

Lasavanne Jürgen Soocramanien

Country: Republic of Mauritius
Pronoun: He, Him
Jürgen is a gender studies graduate from the University of Mauritius. He is passionate about human rights with a strong interest in LGBTQIA issues, women rights movements and ethnic minorities. Jürgen is currently serving at the Young Queer Alliance, a youth-led and LGBT organisation. Jürgen has been advocating for LGBTQIA rights at 121st UNHRC session during the fifth periodic review of Mauritius in Geneva. 

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Mahmoud Salah Shehata

Country: Egypt
Pronoun: He, Him
Mahmoud is a 5th grade medical student from Egypt.  He finds his passion through advocating for diversity and inclusion, raising awareness about health issues and being a leader of change in his community. Mahmoud is also a trainer on sexuality and gender, a dialogue facilitator and a freelancer. He loves art and music and is a gym addict. Mahmoud also practices as a graphic designer.

Maryam Lillian Gamar

MARYAM LILLIAN GAMAR

Country: Morocco
Pronoun: She, Her
Maryam, 19 years old, is a young Moroccan homosexual woman, a self-alleged world citizen, a feminist, a writer, a blogger and a social entrepreneur in the making. She is passionate about love, knowledge, and all of the beautiful things in life. Maryam loves tea, and classical music, and is passionate about helping those who are discriminated based on their peaceful beliefs, sexual identity, or sex.

Qwin Fiona Mbabazi Nabagereka

Qwin Fiona Mbabazi Nabagereka

Country: Uganda
Pronoun: She, Her
Qwin is  an affirmative Feminist and is passionate
about Human Rights Activism in Uganda. Qwin is also an Alumni of Human Rights Campaign Global Innovators Summit of 2016 and was also part of the team that planned, organized and implemented the 1st Queer Kampala International Film Festival. Qwin also serves as Board Member of Equality Hub, a LBT organization based in Nigeria.

Shamim Salim Juma

shamim salim

Country: Kenya
Pronoun: She, Her
Shamim is a Queer, Muslim, feminist and a human rights activist. Shamim currently works at Church World Service advocating for the rights of LGBTIQ refugees as well as inclusion of LGBTIQ persons in places of worship. She is also a Board Member of UHAI-EASHRI, an indigenous activist fund providing resources to support civil society activism around issues of sexuality, health and human rights in the East African region.

Sibo Olivier King

SIBO OLIVIER KING (King)

Country: Burundi
Pronoun: He, Him, They, Their
King is a community development advocate with a focus in support of human rights and youth empowerment. He is currently engaged with MOLI as the communication officer and the program officer for Atelier AGACIRO and Action MENYA Plus. King’s relationship with the creative industry is evolving by stepping in as a designer and entrepreneur. He enjoys development related discussions, visual arts, drag arts and travelling.

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Tafadzwa Nyaungwa

Country: Zimbabwe
Pronoun: She, Her
Tafadzwa is a young, vibrant, black queer woman and a feminist who loves working with the LGBTI community. She had the opportunity to serve as an LBT Coordinator for the organisation called GALZ and recently joined the African Queer Youth Initiative as a member. Much of her work involves working closely with LB women, and trans-men, encouraging their visibility, representation and participation in safe spaces.

Victor

Victor

Country: Kenya
Pronoun: He, Him
Victor is currently the director of Men Against AIDS Youth Group (MAAYGO) working with gay men and other Men who have Sex with Men in Kisumu county, Kenya. He is also among the key founders of AQYI.  Victor is currently involved in a number of organisational management and development works such as fundraising, human resource management, program review and strengthening and quality management.

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WALTER UCHENNA UDE

Country: Nigeria
Pronoun: He, Him
Walter, is a writer and storyteller, and has in the past few years, channeled that into his LGBT activism. He has been writing in various anthologies: So We Do Not Forget,  A Handful of Dust, and he debuted his first novel, The Event, in 2014, and co-authored a novella, Love Eventually. He also runs the blog, mymindsnaps.com. More recently, he is a part of an online literary group dedicated to the publication of LGBT literature.

Wiem Askri

Wiem Askri

Country: Tunisia
Pronoun: They, Them, Their
Askri self-identifies as a non-binary person and has been volunteering since a young age. Askri was able to work with several national and international association and is currently working on transitional justice in Tunisia advocating for human rights, gender equality and LGBT+ rights with the aim that one day, people would be able to enjoy freedom and equality without having to leave their country.

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