Like coal miners used caged canary birds, whose death was a warning sign of toxic gases in the mine tunnels, the treatment of homosexual women and men, and transgender and intersex people in southern Africa is symptomatic of the dangers facing all people who are excluded in some way or another in our societies, by those who have a grip on social, economic, and political power.
There is a general belief that African people are deeply homophobic and unaccepting of gender diversities. But what does the African public really think? The truth is that we don’t really know because hardly any work has been done to gather and analyze the views of the public in a structured way in Africa. Until now.
African researchers who live and work on the continent have an opportunity to explore the data from our survey of attitudes towards homosexuality and gender non-conformity, first. The Other Foundation seeks expressions of interest to work with the data in a variety of ways.
”Kill the gays’ pastor now trying to infiltrate Malawi’ the latest article by Carl Collison, the first Rainbow Fellow at the Mail & Guardian newspaper, through a partnership with the Other Foundation. Carl writes on a wide range of social justice issues and is committed to defending and advancing the human rights of the LGBTI community in southern Africa.
Everyone should be free to live a safe and dignified life, have a family and make their contribution to society. The Other Foundation works to change the views, practices and institutions that prevent people – because of who they are or who they love – from being able to do that in southern Africa. We gather support for those who are working to protect and advance the rights, wellbeing and social inclusion of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities – and we give support in a smart way that helps groups to work better for lasting change.
The Other Foundation is an African trust dedicated to advancing human rights in Southern Africa, with a particular focus on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people. Our primary purpose is to expand resources available to defend and advance the rights and well-being of LGBTI people in the Southern African region. We do this by working both as a grant-maker and a fundraiser. Read our full mission statement here. The Atlantic Philanthropies has provided a generous start-up grant over a five-year period to cover all operational costs, subject to the Foundation being able to raise additional funds from other sources. More information about how we started can be found here.
The Foundation is pleased to announce the outcomes of its inaugural round of grant making. The Foundation allocated 32 grants, totaling around ZAR3.1 million, for work that will advance the rights and improve the well-being of LGBTI people in Southern Africa. Organisations and individuals were given grants ranging from ZAR10,000 to ZAR500,000. Click here to see a full list of grants that were allocated. The Other Foundation wanted its first grant making initiative to be a truly transparent and participatory process. Rather than consider grant proposals entirely on its own, the foundation’s board asked the public to nominate a panel of peer reviewers to help review and assess grant applications. The 12 peer reviewers chosen formed a diverse group from six countries in southern Africa. They worked in four teams, each facilitated by a board member, to decide which projects to recommend for funding. This gave meaningful expression to the identity of The Other Foundation as an LGBTI community foundation. Click here to see who the peer reviewers were in the grant making process.Click here to see a report about the development, implementation, and outcomes of this unique grant making process. The report will be of interest to foundations and philanthropists interested in more accountable and transparent ways of making grants.
The funds for the pilot grant-making initiative have come from personal gifts from 18 individual donors who visited South Africa early in 2014 to find out more about the amazing work that activists are doing to defend and advance the rights of LGBTI people in Southern Africa. The Atlantic Philanthropies matched the funds raised from this donor tour, providing The Other Foundation with close to ZAR4 million to give out as small grants to individuals and organisations across Southern Africa. A range of fundraising initiatives were launched in 2014. All funds that are raised will go to programming and grant-making as our operational costs are fully covered by the Atlantic Philanthropies for the next five years.
We would love to hear from you if you have any questions or comments. Answers to some frequently asked questions about The Other Foundation are answered here. Please contact us either by email, phone, or letter. Details of how to do that are on our Contact Us page.
Human rights activist with a legal background. Active in church groups that promote greater understanding of diversity and human rights in a multi-cultural context.
Counseling psychologist and senior psychology lecturer. Former director of the transformation and employment equity office of Wits University.
Educationalist interested in the use of new technologies and a leadership coach. Technical support director in the South African government’s basic education department.
Economist, policy researcher, and entrepreneur with a corporate and investment banking background. Print media columnist on social and economic development issues.
Print, radio and television journalist with a strong commitment to amplifying the concerns of women. Media freedom activist.
Miguel de Brito
Mozambican human rights activist. Instrumental in setting up Mozambique’s leading LGBTI organisation. Democracy and governance specialist with a focus on electoral systems.
Organisational development, monitoring and evaluation, and project design specialist. Researcher and consultant on philanthropy development.
African philanthropy development practitioner, experienced grant maker, economic justice activist, and civil society strategist with a track record in establishing successful organisations. Chief executive officer of The Other Foundation.