Nine candidates for the GALE Association Committee
9 February 2017 - The period for proposing candidates for the GALE Association Committee has closed. The profiles of the candidates are now on the voting page so the GALE members can orient themselves on who to vote. The elections will take place online between 15 February and 1 March. Any of them can be elected provided they have a minimum of 10 votes. Here are the campaign texts candidates wrote (in order of submission).
My name is Sheina Leoni, I am Uruguayan and I work as a teacher in my country, but I am also a writer and activist for LGBT issues, an intense fighter for the rights of the young people of this community. The young people trust me as much as I do in them, although I am heterosexual. I do not consider this important, because in this struggle, I feel one more, and that is how everyone perceives me, including my family. I was cofounder and first secretary of an NGO in Uruguay, but I had to withdraw because the choices of the NGO President were not the ones I considered appropriate. Upon retiring, I founded, with a group of teachers of different sexual orientations, the Aguilas Multicolores group, to work specifically with LGBT youth, to help them out of the closet and raise their self-esteem. Numerous courses and a text about bullying will be published shortly with a colleague, in which I dedicated myself especially on Homophobic Bullying.
I have given talks, workshops, invited people from different LGBT fields to guide and accompany my students. I was the first to bring LGBT groups to educational institutions. And my thematic video was chosen two years ago as one of the representative works in this aspect by the Embassy of USA in Uruguay.
Without manifesting petulance, I know I have a great experience and affection for these young people, and that is that why I request to seriously consider my application, because I want and I will continue doing things. (The original version of the sumitted text is in Spanish, to read this, switch to the Spanish page by clicking ES on the top of the page.)
I am Rodger Phiri, Programs Officer for Art and Global Health Center Africa Umunthu Program. Umunthu Program gives voice to marginalized communities by utilising art as a catalyst for discussion. Providing a platform to address contentious human rights issues that has an implication on health.
Umunthu program has been one of the main program that has advocated for LGBTI right to health, right to association, understanding and social inclusion in Malawi and has shared the unique approach with other players in Africa and beyond. I in my capacity as Umunthu Programs Officer have been instrumental in program design, implementation, management and direction, advocacy and policy intervention and engagement with policy makers and all. I think my membership in the GALE Association Committee will be instrumental and helpful for Malawi LGBTI representation in particular and the world in general and personally I think I have so much to contribute to GALE and share with the committee members and LGBTI community in general on the situation in African countries where LGBTI people are excluded and the strategies that are in place to advocate for their inclusion which can be replicated by other countries in similar or different situations. (The original version of the sumitted text is in English. Your can read Spanish and French versions by clicking ES or FR on the top of the page.)
I am Emily Meadows. I am American by nationality, but grew up around the world, so am acutely attuned to both the unique requirements of local contexts and the importance of tailoring strategic plans according to a global framework. I am passionate about strengthening the rights of sexual minority students to relevant, equitable, and inclusive education. I am also uniquely prepared to work for and within a culturally diverse network. My contribution to the Association Committee would be to offer a current understanding of the academic literature on LGBTQ+ inclusion in education, particularly on a global level. Read here my full presentation letter.
My name is Eben Diaz and I am queer. I am a translator, theologian, athlete and engineer in information systems. I am originally from Nicaragua. In my country I have been founder of several activist groups of LGBTIQ, at the moment I coordinate one of them. I was a fellow of the Inter-American Development Bank and also a fellow of the government of Germany (on two occasions). I studied in Berlin (Germany), Bogota (Colombia) and San Salvador (El Salvador). At the Central American level I have contributed to several LGBTIQ leadership initiatives in support of our rights. I am currently participating in an initiative of a group of Central American activists that seeks to position a human rights agenda for gender-generic diversity at the Central American at SICA (Central American Integration System) and the Central American Parliament (PARLACEN). I am also currently coordinating a study on the living conditions of LGBTIQ in Central American region that seeks to scientifically highlight the current situation of people of sexual diversity to find possible alternatives to their situation in one of the most unequal and difficult regions of the world for LGBTIQ people, this with the support of the University of New York and the UNDP. I have collaborated in spaces such as All Out, IGLHRC and Human Righst Education Associates (HREA) as a translator and I also collaborated with ILGA as Communications Officer for Latin America and the Caribbean. I am currently a member of the Latin American editorial board of the International Resource Network (IRN) of the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies (based in New York) and I have been invited to give several courses in two universities in my country (the Central American University - UCA and the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua - UNAN) on subjects related to sex-generic diversity. I have also been invited by the Ministry of Education of my country to support them in training related to the management of sexual education and human sexualities in adolescents. It would be an honor to be able to collaborate and share my national, regional and international experience and thus enrich the expertise and reach of GALE.
I am Willmer Galarza from Bolivia. I work with the "Colectivo TLGB de Bolivia".
John Chitambo Lobe
My name is John Chitambo Lobe, I am a Zambian freelance journalist LGBT reporter,Human rights advocate activist trained as an educator. In my country Zambia I organized many workshops in different schools and meetings with Parents Teachers Association(PTA) Teachers, Educators, Lecturers, Parents in Zambia to fight homophobia attitudes, policy and culture in Zambian schools, colleges and universities. We focused on gender discrimination, humiliation, bullying, and so on.
As a LGBT journalist reporter I reported on television and radio about sexual discrimination and violent activities against LGBT pupils in schools. Recently I organized some media debates to change the mindset of people on different sexual orrientations in African society on local autonomous radio and television stations. I am a member of Global Alliance for LGBT Education and of Campaign for Homosexuality Equality (CHE) in London-UK and worked with local Zambian LGBT group called Friends of Rainka (FOR) to encourage LGBT young people to go to school and to report all gender discrimination to me. I make news headlines and media reports to inform the nation and the world about what is happening on LGBT people in Zambian schools.
I was arrested tortured and censored by the police in detention. It is against the Zambian constitution to promote LGBT rights and education. All the churches condemned me and said it is against the Bible. They say homosexuality is satanic and that Zambia is a christian nation. All the tradition leaders condemned me as well, saying that homosexuality is unafrican, and that it is not our culture and tradition.
I fled from my country Zambia to France where I now live as an asulym seeker. I continue my activism in France with different local French associations like SOS HOMOPHOBIE. SOS HOMOPHOBIE supports victims of homophobia by sharing their experiences. I also work with ARDHIS, which works for LGBT adults seeking assulym in France, LE REFUGE for young LGBT persons seeking assulym in France, and CONTACT which works in French schools.
As a freelance LGBT Journalist reporter I am a member of the French LGBT Journalists Association (AJL) and I work on discrimination items with a local radio station called Radio Agora and with HOMO MICRO radio in Paris-France.
I think my contribution and experience would be necessary to the GALE Association Committee, if you give me a chance.
My name is Waheed Ahmad. I am a lawyer from Pakistan. I am enthusiastic to work with an organisation such as yours to make use of my capabilities as a Human Rights Advocate. As a well-known expert in Pakistan's legal and foreign policies, I have the opportunity to represent Pakistan at various International Forums in different countries. I worked as a Project Lawyer (2006-2007) for the British Pakistan Law Council Project Advocate Foundation (free Legal Aid to children in detention) and did jail visits, Juveniles’ Family Coordination, Juvenile’s Counseling, and I represented children in court. I have been dealing with cases of discrimination, stigmatization, and social/professional injustices with different people including recently with HIV positive people. In Our Society people with HIV are considered very evil, bad persons because people here have one notion in their mind that HIV is contracted through gay sexual relationships. I have been trying to change their attitude. Instead of facing hatred they must be provided equal opportunities in all walks of life. I have conducted lectures in Madrassas (Islamic Religious Schools) regarding HIV/AIDS, laws; occupational health and safety and protection of their fundamental rights.
I have also worked for World Bank Group (International Finance Corporation). Their assignments have been completed by me successfully which has earned me great appreciation from the World Bank Group.
I offer my services to work for your esteemed organization as a Consultant/Representative for monitoring and Project Assessment of your projects in Pakistan or any part of the World and providing Legal Assistance. I also provide any research Work (Child abuse, Women Rights, Child Labour , Child Education, Gender Issues , Juveniles, HIV/AIDS, Peace and any kind of option work you may need).
If I am given the opportunity to work with you, I assure you that I will leave no stone unturned in working according to your manifesto. I will ever be ready to help and assist the needy and helpless. Whenever I see people in dire need of any assistance, my heart really aches and prompts me to go at once to stand by them.
My C.V. is attached for your kind perusal. I believe that my experience in this field will greatly benefit your Organisation.
My name is Kiran Bhairannavar. My politics emerges from the extreme homophobia at school and the university against individuals who do not identify with normative gender and sexual preferences. The day I found a voice to stand against such abuse, my path was determined: to sensitize people about the lives LGBT/queer individuals live, the constraints they face and the way the society is responsible for such marginalization. I am currently based at the University of Delhi as a teaching staff. I incorporate themes on sexualities (LGBT/queer and heteronormativity) to teach and at the same time help students understand why LGBT/queer lives matter. I have completed my doctoral studies in Singapore, on understanding queer men’s lives in Indian city of Delhi. Given a chance to be on the GALE Association committee, I look forward to add my knowledge of the field (India/ South Asia), perspectives from education and teaching, and a critical edge as an academic.
My name is Aditya Bondyopadhyay. I am a lawyer based in Delhi, India. For the last 25 years, I have worked on LGBT rights issues in India and other South Asian Countries. I have exclusively focused on LGBT legal matters, pro bono, for the last 10 years. I was one of the founder member of the two most active international LGBT/MSM networks in the world and in Asia respectively. These are namely the "Global Forum for MSM" and the "Asia Pacific Coalition on Male Sexual Health". I served on their boards for years, till I retired a few years ago. Now I undertake community building work with young LGBT and do litigation to ensure their rights to health, education, and safety/dignity. I have also been closely linked with the litigation and social movement to decriminalise homosexuality in India. I am 45 years old. An age where I have experience in international, regional, and domestic LGBT networking and it's processes, while still being young enough to act as a peer to young LGBT in distress or need.