Stories of Change

Watch the inspiring Stories of Change from LGBTI activists, organisations and front-liners from all over world! Get a deeper insight into how they have achieved changes at various levels and how our vision translates into reality.

If you are a partner of COC and would like to produce your own Story of Change, please get in touch with the relevant Project Manager.

You can also make use of the filters below to specify your search along different criteria!

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Decriminalization in Malawi

CEDEP engaged with the Ministry of Justice of Malawi and the Malawi Human Rights Commission to discuss and address the decriminalization of homosexuality ...
2019

Making Space in Malawi for Rainbow Voices

LITE was established in 2016 and registered in 2018. It started by conducting needs assessments with lesbian, trans and intersex community people in Malawi ...

Understanding Each Others’ Struggles

Recently Zimbabwe has seen an increase of emerging LGBTI organisations who were either created under or with the support from GALZ and SRC. The current ...

Safety Training for LGBTIQ People in Malawi

Human rights activists in particular LGBTI activists are not safe in Malawi. Although the LGBTI movement has grown significantly in Malawi, it does not ...

Building Capacity for LGBTI Research in Ethiopia

An anonymous activist from Ethiopia gives an update on the involvement of Ethiopian organisations in regional research on LGBTI. This Story of Change is ...
2019

Health Care Activism for LGBTI people in Ethiopia

An anonymous activist gives an update on current health activism in Ethiopia. This Story of Change is an illustration of the PRIDE programme. ...

From Data to Change

A Story of Change on a coordinated research with LGBTI organisations in Southern and East Africa regions where 23 LGBTI organisations from 9 countries in ...

The East African Transgender Movement

The EATHAN network of transgender organisations has been developing from an initiative, and idea in 2015 to a stronger, unified network of 18 organisations ...

Celebrating Lesbian Visibility Day in Bobo Dioulasso

In a context where LBQ women are invisible and threatened by the majority of Burkinabe society, it is a challenge to gather and be visible. Most LBQ women ...
2019

Movement Building in Burkina Faso

Since 2017, different LGBT organizations have emerged in Ouagadougou and Bobo Dioulasso. Through the PRIDE program, those organizations received their first ...

Economic Empowerment of LGBTI in Ghana

Watch the inspiring story of how Solace Initiative, an organisation based in Ghana, has enabled LGBTI people in the country to work towards self-economic ...
2019

Building Self-Esteem and Understanding Sexual Orientation

This video presents the testimonies of young gay men and lesbian women who participated in a training on self-esteem. Through those trainings, the people ...
2019

Regional Meeting of LBQ Organisations (Francophone West

In November 2018, 4 LBQ organisations from Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast and Togo gathered in Cameroon, where they were welcomed by a dynamic LBQ organisation ...
2019

Collaboration with the Police in times of Crisis in

In May 2017, members of the LGBTI organisation CAMFAIDS based in Yaounde in Cameroon, were assaulted and attacked by people from the neighbourhood. Here ...

The Effectiveness of Change Within AVAF Cameroon

AVAF (Association pour la Valorisation de la Femme) is a lesbian organisation founded in 2015 in Yaoundé, Cameroon. From its inception, COC supported its ...
2019

Cameroon: On the Way to a National LGBT Movement

Despite the high repression against homosexuality in Cameroon, the LGBTI movement is one of the most active in West and Central Africa. About 30 organisations ...

Facilitating Unfiltered Conversations in Safe Spaces, for

The activity on which this lesson learnt documentation process is focused on, can be summed up in one word, Conversations. The Conversations are intended ...
2019

Regional Intersex Exchange Program

SIPD is an intersex organisation from Uganda that uses their longstanding expertise in working to promote the human rights of intersex people to support ...
2019

Putting LBQ-Women at the Forefront – the Birth of an

The story on the establishment of the first LBQ-led organisation in Belize and the creation of a culture of empowerment for LBQ-women in the country. This ...
2019

Mobilisation des Femmes LBQ au Cameroun et en Afrique de

Dans le cadre de la mise en oeuvre du programme PRIDE (Partenariat pour les Droits humains, l’Inclusion, la Diversité et l’Egalité) du COC Nederland, ...

Caribbean LGBTQI Leadership Academy Pilot Programme

The Caribbean LGBTQI Leadership Academy (the Leadership Academy), with financial support provided by the Caribbean Vulnerable Communities Coalition (CVC) ...
2018

Burkina Faso: the transgender community

Story of the creation of a transgender space in a country where transgenders are non-existing. Transgender people in Burkina Faso were provided a space ...
2018

Engaging Micro Finance Institutions with LGBTI Communities:

This narrative is an account of Micro Rainbow International’s experience in designing and delivering financial inclusion programmes for LGBTI people in ...
2018

The South African Police Service’s Dignity, Diversity And

In the past years, civil society organisations (CSOs) in South Africa have been working with law enforcement agencies in their respective provinces to reduce ...
2018

Kenya: Advocacy and Policy Engagement by Ishtar-MSM in

Ishtar-MSM engages in advocacy and policy engagement by being the link between the MSM (men who have sex with men) and MSW (male sex workers) community ...
2018

Botswana: Raising awareness of stakeholders and mobilization

Rainbow Identity Association’s (RIA) lessons learned process focused on raising awareness on issues of transgender and intersex persons to different ...
2018

Cameroon: The commitment of champion journalist to

A journalist did facilitate at a training for journalists, organized by our partner Affirmative Action, to have a better understanding about LGBTI issues ...
2018

Burkina Faso: Activities for LBQ women from Ouagadougou

Empowerment of LBQ women and Transgenders in Burkina Faso, through the work of a LBQ organisation in Ouagadougou, which organizes for instance soccers plays, ...
2018

Burkina Faso: Stories of LGBTI people from Bobo Dioulasso

Stories of LGBTI individuals from Bobo Dioulasso, members of association Alternative Burkina, about rejection, love, misunderstanding, discrimination at ...

Haiti: National training for community leaders

How to learn to be a good community leader? Results of a training dedicated to leaders of the main LGBTI organisations in Haiti, which reinforced the skills ...

Belize: 1st Caribbean Regional meeting PRIDE

COC’s partner organisations from Belize, Guyana and Haiti together with representatives from the regional networks ECADE and CariFLAGS gathered for the ...
2018

Malawi: Transforming the discourse around LGBTI

Insights in how CEDEP in Malawi has been engaging with the media and has been able to change the ways (some) media report on sexual orientation, gender ...
2018

Botswana: As The Court Pleases – An Assessment Of

In March 2013, LEGABIBO put a case before the courts to challenge refusal to register the organisation. In November 2014 LEGABIBO won the case at the High ...
2018

Kenya: the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights

In 2013, three Kenyan activists advocating for the advancement of the human rights of sexual and gender minorities committed to engaging at the ACHPR for ...
2018

South Africa: The power of safe spaces for dialogue

Providing safe spaces for LGBTI communities – also in rural areas – helps bring them into contact with their peers, with practitioners and with police ...
2018

South Africa: A trans colleague in the police force

Holding discussions about gender-neutral toilets and following a training helped contribute to the acceptance of a colleague who is a transman in the South ...

Kenya: Service Delivery and Uptake for MSM and MSW

The document highlights the implementation and the achievements achieved so far in service provision and uptake at the wellness centre. The analysis and ...
2018

United Nations: Activists lobbying in the UPR-cycle

Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Ghana and Pakistan received many recommendations on SOGIESC issues from other countries in the UN Universal Periodic Review-cycle, resulting ...
2018

Malawi: Peer Education Programme

Centre for the Development of People (CEDEP) is one of the organizations implementing evidence based prevention project targeting men who have sex with ...
2017

South Africa: Integrated Training for Health Care Providers

To read more about the lessons learned open the PDF-document below: LL 40 Integrated Training for Health Care This lessons learned document was developed ...

South Africa: Trans and Gender Affirming Health Care

It starts with the first contact at the front desk: how does the administrator reacts on you? The trainings by Gender Dynamix sentisize all workers in the ...
2017

South Africa: Scaling up Free PREP

As a community based organisation, OUT in Pretoria is selected as one of the three organisations to roll out PREP in South Africa. This Story of change ...
2017

South Africa: Respect by Men and Women in Blue

Sergent Bonginkosi tells about his increased knowlegde of Human Rights, resulting in more respect for LGBTI in his and his colleagues daily work as police ...

Vietnam: I am a Woman who Loves Women

A great serie of photography from Northern Vietnam where Women Loving Women (WlW) came out on social media. CSAGA’s social media campaign did reach ...

Malawi: Advocacy Approaches

To read more about the lessons learned open the PDF-document below: LL30 – Advocacy Approaches in Malawi This lessons learned document was developed ...
2017

MeNa region: Home Queer Home

The QUEER ZONE Project provides a safe space for the LGBT community. There people can express themselves freely and discuss issues that concerns them. How ...
2017

Netherlands: Supporting asylum seekers

LGBTI refugees living in asylum centres have a lot to deal with: a new and different culture, a whole package of procedures and fellow refugees who can ...
2017

Netherlands: Young&Out

This project provides safe spaces where LGBTI teenagers can meet each other and be themselves. The spaces, both online and offline, are well protected and ...
2017

Netherlands: Pink Passkey Project

In the Dutch city of Utrecht, elderly LGBTI people now have more opportunities for LGBTI-inclusive healthcare and nursing-home facilities. Pink Passkey ...

Netherlands: Gender Sexuality Alliances

Students and teachers come together in GSAs to organise activities in their schools regarding sexual orientation and gender identity. Purple Friday (when ...

Netherlands: Repect2Love

This project brings together the bicultural and LGBTI communities. People who are raised within two different cultures and LGBTI people face many of the ...

Ghana: Develop your passion

‘Develop your passion and dare to achieve more’. Quitta (Sadiq) tells about her development as a trans woman and how she has become a role model ...
2017

Ghana: Do it ourselves

‘No one will come and do this for us’. Jo King from CEPEHRG Ghana tells about the strength and courage he gets from seeing his LGBTI peers working ...

Ghana: Embrace yourself and dream

‘Put away your shyness, embrace yourself and dream’ With this personal motto, Manu from One Heart Foundation in Ghana reaches out to HIV-positive ...

Vietnam: WLW Art Exhibition

‘Exposure’ increases the visibility of WLW. In Hanoi, CSAGA organised an art exhibition called ‘Exposure’ about women-loving women (WLW). ...
2017

Botswana: Challenging structural barriers through the Gender

The activity Bonela focused its Lesson Learned Document on is the Gender and Sexual Minorities Coalition which operates in Gaborone and surrounding areas ...
2017

Ghana: Working as one movement

The fact that there is now one strong national movement in Ghana represents a major change. Thanks to capacity building (stimulated and sponsored by donors), ...
2017

Zambia: Health Care Providers’ sensitization and capacity

Trans Bantu Zambia’s (TBZ) lessons learned focussed on Health Care Providers (HCP) sensitisation on the health needs and appropriate services for Trans ...
2017

Kyrgyzstan: Factory of activism

Labrys: The Central Asian factory of activism. Labrys is a good example of an organisation that works on different levels to achieve social change. For ...
2017

Kazakhstan: A nationwide movement

Kazakhstan: A Nationwide Movement Having started with small groups, now there is a nationwide movement that organises different events where information ...

Central Asia: Changing the doctor

The doctor: From a door slammed shut to an open door. In a meeting between a doctor and an LGBTI organisation, the doctor had expressed that LGBTI patients ...

Ukraine: Ready for change!

In Ukraine, LGBTI people are ready to change their society – right now! Years of careful community building by LIGA has resulted in a movement that is ...

Kyrgyzstan: Legal rights success

A discriminatory bill is defeated in Kyrgyzstan. Kyrgyz Indigo prevented a bill from being passed that would have prohibited mentioning LGBTI people in ...

South Africa: LGBTI refugee programme

Triangle Project has been providing services to LGBTI people in the Western Cape for 35 years and we always guide our work by understanding that being an ...
2017

Haiti: Front runners

Empowered front runners of Haiti at the roots of social change in Haiti. Community-based organisations come together in a COC workshop to create strong ...
2017

Tanzania: Training refugee organisations

Refugee organisations are trained on LBGTI human rights and sexuality. This story ‘Sexuality and Love of Humanity’ by SANA from Tanzania, transformed ...

Tanzania: Queer Moslim faith

A queer moslim reconciles his heart with the Islamic faith. By following a workshop with peers, Salum Abdullah from Tanzania made a positive connection ...

Kenya: Parties as safe spaces

How to create safe spaces and connect to healthcare: Parties! ISHTAR’s parties in Kenya are well attended. They are the place to be for fun, meeting ...

Tanzania: Trans people parents

It is not a one-day process: Programmes engaging parents of transgender people. Mwamba Nyanda from Tanzania tells about the slow process of gaining understanding ...

Kenya: Take it to the streets

Take it to the streets: Educating motorcycle taxi drivers in Kenya. Boda bodas (motorcycle taxi drivers) can be very hostile towards LGBTI customers, especially ...

Kenya: Traning religious leaders

Religious leaders: From aggressors to allies in Kenya. Having once spread hate, over 200 religious leaders have been trained all over Kenya since 2011. ...

Tanzania: Training the press

Give the public what they need, not what they want. “How does is feel to always face negative and hateful media coverage?” was the crucial question ...

Kenya: Traning medical specialists

Training professionals about gender diversity and the intersex condition. Jinsiangu in Kenya made progress by training medical specialists about intersex, ...

Ethiopia: A strong message

A strong social-media message in hostile surroundings. An Ethiopian activist made an anonymous online statement ‘Hope’ using the Ethiopian national ...

Vietnam: Out&Proud

Entertainment and services go hand in hand. Lighthouse  in Hanoi knows how to attract a young crowd and give them a good time along with relevant information ...
2017

Vietnam: Training of WLW

‘Every love starts from the heart’. Many Women Loving Women in Vietnam live in social isolation. They do not feel free to talk about their sexual ...

Netherlands: The Pink Ballot Agreement

To read more about the lessons learned open the PDF-document below: LL26 – The Pink Ballot Agreement
2017

Botswana: A comparison of urban and rural LGBT support

This LEGABIBO lessons learned assessment focuses on evaluating the effectiveness, efficiency, functionality and relevance of the LGBT support groups. The ...
2017

Lesotho: Identifying gaps to focus on in future work through

The activity that Matrix focused on in this Lessons Learned process was a community dialogue programme with the specific purpose of identifying gaps in ...
2016

Creating access to health services for LGBT Community in

The project that Rock of Hope (RoH) is focussing its lessons learned on is strengthening access to health care as part of their overall advocacy strategy. ...
2016