Announcing Our 2023/2024 HRC Foundation Global Small Grants Recipients – Advocates Helping To Advance Global LGBTQ+ Equality

by HRC Staff

Each year, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Global Partnerships Program provides around 20 grants to organizations around the globe whose focus is to advance LGBTQ+ equality in their respective countries.

Each grant, worth up to $5,000, helps support a range of innovative and impactful programs designed to improve the lives of LGBTQ+ people around the world. Each grant recipient is an alumni of HRC Foundation’s ever-growing Global Alumni Leaders Network - now numbering about 230 LGBTQ+ advocates in more than 100 countries.

The HRC Global Small Grants program is once again made possible with generous support from ADM and we are grateful for their continued partnership.

Learn more about some of the recipients, their organizations and the powerful impact of their work:

Mariano Ruiz (He/Him)

Derechos Humanos y Diversidad Asociación Civil, Argentina

"This grant will assure LGBTIQ+ asylum seekers and refugees in the city of Buenos Aires access to the healthcare system with particular focus on trans, non-binary people and people living with HIV; despite language or bureaucratic barriers."

Lilit Martirosyan (She/Her)

Right Side Human Rights Defender NGO, Armenia

"Once again, I express my sincere gratitude for the support, and I am genuinely excited to collaborate further with HRC in the pursuit of LGBTQ+ equality."

Denitsa Lyubenova (She/Her)

Youth LGBT organization Deystvie, Bulgaria

Denitsa organized the Sofia Pride Film Fest in Bulgaria with a focus on Marriage Equality.

Srorn Srun (He/Him)

CamASEAN Youth's Future, Cambodia

"The HRC Global Small Grant has empowered LGBTIQ storytelling to their families, communities, local religious leaders and local authorities. This activity will contribute to positive lobbying and advocacy at the national level in the next few years."

Alba Lucia Reyes Arenas (She/Her)

Sergio Urrego Foundation, Colombia

"The reception of the grant from the Human Rights Campaign is essential for the Sergio Urrego Foundation, as it provides us with the opportunity to carry out two "Brigadas Salvavidas" initiatives at the Pasquilla Rural School. This project holds significant importance by focusing on providing support and empowerment tools to LGBTQIA+ youth, a particularly vulnerable demographic in terms of mental health. By guiding the student and teaching community in suicide prevention through psychosocial approaches, we are not only addressing a critical need but also building a safe and understanding space. This investment will directly contribute to empowering LGBTQIA+ youth in taking care of their mental health, thus making significant progress toward protecting their rights and promoting diversity in our society".

Viktor Heumann (He/They)

Transparent, Czechia

Transparent is immensely grateful for the opportunity to utilize the HRC Small Grant that enables us to collaborate with other Czech LGBTI+ teams to develop trans advocacy strategies. Together, we will aim to amplify a unified voice supporting gender diversity and work towards ending discriminatory practices against trans people in Czechia.”

Jules Mugaruka (They/Them)

LA COLOMBE Pride ASBL, Democratic Republic of Congo

"The 2024 HRC Global Small Grant will be very helpful for my work and my Trans and Non-Binary siblings in the Eastern Congo! Thanks to these funds we will continue our fight for Self-Determined Legal Gender Recognition which is one of our most fundamental rights that is denied to us.

'Legal gender recognition' refers to a person’s ability to change their name and gender marker on official documents, allowing them to be recognized by law according to their lived gender. This process is crucial for upholding the dignity of Trans persons and ensuring their enjoyment of human rights. When trans people cannot present official documents that align with their gender identity and expression, they face scrutiny and risk discrimination or violence whenever they need to provide identification — whether opening a bank account, accessing healthcare or employment opportunities, renting an apartment or passing through a police checkpoint.

This is why we're very excited and delighted to receive these funds which will enable us to fight for an equitable environment for Trans persons in the Eastern Congo!!"

Yuri Yoursky (He/Him)

Estonian Trans Alliance, Estonia

"The HRC grant will greatly help to strengthen the advocacy capacity of the trans community of Estonia, by supporting community mobilization activities of Estonian Trans Alliance and nourishing their preparedness for advocacy on the way to legal gender recognition based on self-determination."

Isaac Bill (She/Her)

The Mediators Foundation, Ghana

“The stigma and discrimination experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people has been clearly linked to a wide range of disparities. With the help of these grants from HRC to The Mediators Foundation, a great deal of attention has been given to implementing community dialogues that mitigate this stigma and discrimination. Thank you HRC!”

Henry Tse (He/Him)

Transgender Equality Hong Kong, Hong Kong

“This HRC grant offers the support we desperately need for legal gender recognition when local resources are unavailable.”

Numan Afifi (He/Him)

JEJAKA, Malaysia

“The support from HRC is invaluable in elevating our mission at the Arts for Human Rights residency. It empowers us to create a more inclusive narrative through art, bridging gaps and fostering understanding within and beyond the LGBT+ community. This grant is not just funding; it's a partnership in making real change.”

Aleh Ordoñez (They/Them)

Ledeser AC, Mexico

“Obtaining this support will allow us to prioritize the LGBTI legislative agenda in Mexico, support the leadership of our community in the upcoming elections and promote a joint work plan with organizations and activists in our country.”

Yaquota Idrissy (She/Her)

South Trans Voice, Morocco

"Receiving this grant is pivotal, providing the crucial resources needed to expand our reach, empower marginalized trans individuals, and drive meaningful change in the pursuit of equality and justice."

Omar van Reenen (They/Them)

Equal Namibia, Namibia

"Receiving the HRC grant is a beacon of hope for Equal Namibia at a critical juncture. In the face of an anti-LGBTQI+ bill threatening our constitutional rights, this grant empowers us to expand Drag Night Namibia- which has long been at the heart of our fight for LGBTQI+ civil rights recognition. It's not just a celebration of queer culture and solidarity; it's a resilient stand for visibility, acceptance, and democracy in Namibia. Together, we defy discrimination, celebrate the true African inclusivity values of Ubuntu, and advocate for the vibrant diversity that defines our nation's strength. Omashenge Ovanhu- Queers are Human too"

Owen Ibukun Atilola (She/Her)

Initiative for Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights Awareness (ISRHRA), Nigeria

Owen’s participation in Gay Games 11 in Hong Kong provided a platform to showcase and promote inclusivity in the world of sports.

Pau Gonzalez (He/Him)

PFLAG Panama, Panama

"With this grant, Asociación de Padres, Familiares y Amigos por la diversidad en Panamá, together with our allies, will continue creating more inclusive institutions of daily life by having a one-day event workshop for key personnel of the Ministry of Health of Panama in 10 provinces. We will also bring an international guest speaker doctor who’s a member of the WPATH to share data and information about the importance of health as a human right for everyone, including LGBTQI+ people, especially trans people who often auto medicate, putting their lives at risk. This event is a step toward accomplishing that the Ministry of Health will eventually develop a trans health protocol for the country, and can serve as support for other countries in the region."

Gabriela Zavaleta Vera (She/Her)

Más Igualdad Perú, Perú

“Peru is one of the last countries in South America that does not guarantee any kind of legal protection for same-sex couples. With HRC’s Global Small Grants, we'll engage with leading companies and businesses that are committed to safe and LGBTIQ-inclusive workplaces and promote their involvement in public statements of support for the legal recognition of same-sex marriage in Peru. This will help us build more engagement within our society for the importance of advocating with the authorities for the legal protections for same-sex couples and their families.”

Kristian Ranđelović (He/Him)

XY Spectrum, Serbia

Kristian developed a toolkit that outlines legal rights, cultural practices, and holistic security measures for intersex people in Serbia.

Anonymous Advocate

LighT, Central Asia

This advocate developed a chatbot to respond with personalized accurate information on trans rights in Central Asia, which will be available on the messenger Telegram, the most popular messenger app in the country.

Salum Abdalla (He/Him)

Bridge Initiative Organisation, Tanzania

"Receiving this grant would allow us to make significant progress toward our goal of creating a more accepting and respectful climate for LGBTQ+ individuals in Zanzibar by fostering inclusive workplaces and building interfaith understanding."

Özgür Gür(He/They)

ÜniKuir, Turkiye

Özgür is empowering young LGBTI+ activists in rural and non-metropolitan areas through community empowerment training sessions and delivering consultancy services.

Qwin Mbabazi (She/Her)

Queer Youth Uganda, Uganda

"This is what community solidarity looks like as it enables us to continue breaking barriers during such harsh and challenging moments in the Ugandan movement."

Reagan Sekidde (They/Them)

Icebreakers Uganda, Uganda

“Receiving this grant will enable me to pursue some of the missions of MY RIGHTS initiative that is to create an inclusive environment where transgender people are free to express themselves, as well as access health and legal services freely in Uganda, equipping knowledge and skills in line with their human rights”

Mino Likwasi (They/Them)

Women's Alliance for Equality, Zambia

"This grant will allow for 12 LBTQ small business owners to undergo an intensive 4-day Business 101 training retreat prior to the implementation of their interest free business loans."