So, early this week, Kenya was graced with the premier of its very first online LGBTQ magazine “IDENTITY”. Telling you I’m excited doesn’t even come close as this is a major step in the right direction especially in voicing the voiceless LGBTQ who walk these streets every day. This premier comes only a few weeks after Freedom in Speech, a website that also serves as a voice for the LGBTQ in Kenya was re-launched; which I guess makes for two major steps in the right direction huh! For those of you who haven’t had a chance to get a copy of IDENTITY, I’m embedding a link http://issuu.com/denisnzioka/docs/identity_magazine_premier_issue-october_2011 and will greatly advice you to look/read through. I will also link the Freedom In Speech website www.freedominspeech.org to give you a broader scope of the strides being made by the LGBTQ movement here in Kenya.
Back to IDENTITY; and given a chance to state what came to mind while reading the articles, I’d take hours so I’ll instead share my comments on the article that greatly moved me. It was the one that features young boys who sell their bodies for survival with one stating how he sold his for as little as Ksh. 100.00 ($ 1.00) to cater for school fees among other basic essentials. As this article didn’t have a mentioned contributor, I give props/commend the activist who met with the boys (some as young as 12 years old) and ultimately advised them on safer sex practices as well as health centres that offer free medical check-up and medication, even taking them to be examined. Saying I was hurt was an understatement as it still pains me even as I write this and I keep trying to figure out what can be done to assist them. Life is hard, I know, but these are children and their clients most probably are not; it hurts greatly.
That said, hope the articles ring true to you and while you’re at it, comments, suggestions and corrections are greatly welcome.