There are over 1 million people in the 10 largest refugee camps in Africa. The Kakuma refugee camp is in the north-western region of Kenya. It is the second largest camp in Africa. The camp was established in 1992 following the arrival of the “Lost Boys of Sudan”.
I am raising relief funds for LGBTQ+ refugees on Block 13 Kakuma Camp, for food, medical care, bedding and other basic needs. Many are from Uganda where they faced overwhelming discrimination and even death for being gay.
These refugees have continued to face violent homophobic and transphobic attacks from fellow refugees and from natives of the land. The worst attack so far took place on June 19, 2020. At least 31 LGBTQ refugees were wounded badly in this massive attack, requiring hospital. They sustained injuries to include deep cuts on their bodies, broken limbs, heavy blood loss, head injuries and more. Their property was either stolen or destroyed by the attackers. They did not get help from those mandated to protect them and their property. They got minimal first aid from a hospital that night- VERY Minimal. A couple of days later their injuries got worse. They needed help. They needed to go to hospital for proper care but couldn’t. In addition, they were hungry as their food was stolen during the attacks.
There are many children in Block 13. When the homophobes come and cause trouble it often results in them getting hurt – even causing death. For instance, On 13 February, the shelter where children were sleeping was attacked. Mothers and babies were forced to run and hide in a ruined shelter off the compound. Intruders invaded and stole the children’s bedding, while their comrades surrounded and stoned the rest of the LGBTQ+ individuals at Block 13.
Block 13 Kakuma remains a very dangerous place for LGBTQ refugees. They mostly sleep outdoors, have very little to eat and many do not get required medications.
They need to escape and start a life where discrimination against LGBTQ people is discouraged.