Building power also means centering the knowledge production and narratives of queer, trans, intersex, Black, People of Color, migrant, Indigenous peoples, and feminist communities. Astraea works to uplift the voices of those whose perspectives are often left out or dismissed. We support organizations who bridge knowledge gaps, harness the power of storytelling, and hold space to challenge traditionally held language and ideas, and in doing so, build more inclusive communities. Through research, reports, and media production, Astraea is shining a spotlight on the needs and groundbreaking work of LGBTQI activists on the frontlines.
Stories matter, and who tells them matters even more. As a philanthropic organization, we are tasked not only with telling our own story, but also with supporting our grantee partners in telling theirs. Our storybank project is a series of videos featuring interviews with LGBTQI activists and donors from around the world talking about their local context and vision for collective liberation. In 2018 we created a number of videos profiling activists from South Africa to the Philippines. By using our digital platforms we ensure that grantee partners are able to promote their critical activism, reaching a wider base and connecting across borders. Watch all these videos online at www.astraeafoundation.org/videolibrary. Through our digital media platforms, we lift up and stand in solidarity with grantee partners by sharing the articles, videos, and other media they produce on the web, and we align ourselves to important campaigns such as Trans Day of Visibility and Intersex Awareness Day.
Over the last year, we have worked with activists, writers, and researchers around the world to produce a number of reports that highlight LGBTQI experiences and funding; the ‘Mapping Digital Landscapes of Trans Activism in Central Asia and Eastern Europe,’ ‘The State of Intersex Organizing (2nd ed)’, ‘The State of Trans Organizing (2nd ed)’, a ‘Dominican Republic LGBTT Landscape Analysis,’ and an ‘LBQ Movement Highlights’ graphic report.
Supported by Astraea since 2011
GALANG’s work elevates community building as resilience and resistance among lesbian, bisexual, and trans (LBT) activists and organizers from local low-income communities. Galang is the Filipino word for respect. The word signifies respect for human rights and diversity, which goes to the heart of GALANG’s vision for equality and justice. Along with their efforts to secure legal protections for LGBTQ people nationally, in the last year they have focused on providing sexuality education to bridge gaps in knowledge and foster communal understanding.
Supported by Astraea since 2017
Young Women United (YWU) works to build communities where all people have access to the information, education, and resources needed to make real decisions about their own bodies and lives. By building community space by and for bilingual and Spanish speaking people, the group is fostering dialogue on reproductive justice for LGBTQ youth, women, People of Color, and Indigenous communities in New Mexico. In the past year, YWU led advocacy efforts to introduce SB78, also known as the “Ban The Box” bill, through the New Mexico House and Senate. The bill would have removed the question of criminal conviction history from initial employment applications in an effort to reduce recidivism, boost local economies, and support family reunification. While the bill did not pass, YWU was extremely successful in educating community members and policy-makers about the collateral consequences of criminal convictions and incarceration. In the year ahead, YWU plans to debut their feature film, focusing on the importance of decriminalizing substance use and incarceration during pregnancy.
Supported by Astraea since 2017
Kohl is a progressive, queer feminist journal on gender and sexuality based in Lebanon and covering the Southwest Asia, Middle East, and North Africa regions. It sheds the light on queer and feminist histories in the region aiming to challenge the hegemony of knowledge production and counter Orientalist and neo-colonial narratives by ensuring that young feminist scholars and activists in the region play a central role in shaping knowledge about themselves. In 2017, they published two issues, involving a total of 30 authors, 10 discussants, 24 peer reviewers, and 3 translators - mostly women, non-binary, and trans young feminist activists, artists, and scholars.
Supported by Astraea since 2018
Intersex South Africa (ISSA) is an organization that was established by the late Intersex Activist Sally Gross. The organization has acted as a catalyst for information dissemination, awareness raising, and advocating for the rights of intersex people in South Africa, acknowledging that there are major knowledge gaps in South Africa as far as intersex issues are concerned. Shortly after ISSA was revived in 2017, the group co-hosted a meeting with Iranti and the Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities’ (CRL) Rights Commission bringing together over 40 stakeholders to discuss intersex infanticide, stigma, and discrimination against intersex people in rural areas. In addition, ISSA also succeeded in getting the attention of and hosting a meeting with the Department of Justice to engage in matters of intersex genital mutilation, infanticide, healthcare procedures, and standards of living for intersex people.
© 2019 Astraea Lesbian Foundation For Justice