30 Jul

“Exclusive Interview with a Refugee: A Personal Story of Persecution and Dramatic Escape” and more

Big thank you to Greg Stemm for writing: Exclusive Interview with a Refugee: A Personal Story of Persecution and Dramatic Escape —  AND — Under the Rainbow: U.S. group helps LGBT Ugandans travel from hatred to hope — which is in part about the work of Friends Ugandan Safe Transport Fund. It is a wonderful article and it includes a lot of background information about why the work of FUST is so needed. I have them both linked here:

Exclusive Interview with a Refugee: A Personal Story of Persecution and Dramatic Escape

by Greg Stemm – July 14, 2016 – Watermark – Orlando, FL


“Jane” is 34 years old and grew up gay in her native Uganda, enveloped by an atmosphere of hatred towards homosexuality. After years of persecution, she was smuggled out of Africa and resettled in Europe where she is making a new life for herself. Watermark is unable to use her real name or the country to which she has relocated. Revealing too much information could place her and those who helped her at risk.

Working together closely with Olympia Quaker Meeting, Watermark was able to secure an exclusive interview with “Jane.” What follows is her story in her own words:

Read the whole article: http://www.watermarkonline.com/2016/07/14/exclusive-interview-refugee-personal-story-persecution-dramatic-escape/


Under the Rainbow: U.S. group helps LGBT Ugandans travel from hatred to hope

by Greg Stemm – July 14, 2016 – Watermark – Orlando, FL

[Note, the graphic with that article says, “Under the Rainbow: Florida group helps LGBT Ugandans travel from hatred to hope” which is an error because we are a Washington State group.]

This is a story that will probably mortify most Americans. Uganda is a place where people are outted and then completely shunned by their families. Their names are read aloud in shame on the radio. They are fired from their jobs and evicted from their homes. Without access to living space, food or health care, many simply perish. Those that don’t can be subject to state-supported beatings, maiming or even death. The atmosphere of terror extends to the families of LGBTQ people, who can also face persecution. The stories remind one of the days of Jews in Nazi Germany.

But there is a beacon of hope in a small Quaker congregation that set out to make a difference. These dedicated individuals cautioned Watermark about what we say and how we say it; a misstep could endanger the lives of those they help and those still in Uganda who were their lifeline out.

Read the whole article: http://www.watermarkonline.com/2016/07/14/watermark-online-uganda-rainbow-railroad/

Please support the work of Friends Ugandan Safe Transport!

We have been offered a matching grant for up to $7000 through the summer, so if you donate now with a check or through PayPal your donation will be doubled.

We sure could use the funds. Between the conductors, today there are 37 LGBT people in hiding, waiting for us to raise the funds to pay for their transport out of Uganda.

Please make a donation to Friends Ugandan Safe Transport Fund.


02 Jul

Article: “Ignorant Kadaga Strikes Again”

One of the conductors that Friends Ugandan Safe Transport supports to transport LGBTQ people out of Uganda with your help shared this article with us with this comment:

“It’s true and visible that leaders in the Ugandan Government are still very homophobic. The world seems to be quickly forgetting the plight of the lgbti in Uganda but there is still so much unforgiving pains and struggles for the ordinary lgbti”
Ignorant Kadaga Strikes Again
30 June 2016 – Queerlife South Africa

Over in homophobic Uganda, one of the country’s most feared gay haters in government, Rebecca Kadaga, the Speaker of Uganda’s Parliament, this week proved once again exactly how ignorant the poor woman is.

IgnorantKadaga-4blogIn a speech where she urged the country’s youth to become “ground fighters” in the national battle against homosexuality she claimed that “the Canadian court has legalised sex with dogs in addition to homosexuality.”

Rebecca Kadaga made the comments at a party hosted by local youth leaders to congratulate her on her reelection to Parliament last February.

In her speech she also said that she has proof that foreign NGOs working in Uganda are recruiting children into homosexuality.

To make a donation to support the work of the Ugandan conductors, click on the link on the top right of this page or the Donate link in our menu. Thanks!
17 May

Article and Video: “This Powerful Film Explores The Dangers Of Being Queer In Uganda”

 05/16/2016 article in Huffpost Queer Voices:

“We should ensure peace, social justice and tolerance for all no matter who they are and who they choose to love.”

Watch this video:

“In 2014, a Ugandan tabloid published the names and faces of 200 “top homos” in the country following the criminalization of homosexuality.

“The results were catestrophic for those named and now a new film is telling the story of one queer person’s experience following his outing.”

Read the article:

16 Feb

Article: “What This Lesbian Learned From Being Outed in Ugandan Tabloids”

By Kasha Jacqueline Nabagesera and Brian Klosterboer – The Advocate

15 Feb

Article: Pastors, politics and anti-gay rhetoric: Uganda’s election cometh

By Amy Fallon – Special Broadcasting Service – SBS [AU] – 15 Feb 2016

“Anti-gay rhetoric in Uganda has intensified in the lead-up to this week’s elections, with pledges to “rehabilitate homosexuals” and the threat of violence worrying LGBT community leaders.”

Read the article:

14 Aug

Exposure In Tabloid Newspaper Places Ugandan LGBTIs To More Danger

HelloDaily-cover1Note from one of FUST’s Ugandan conductors:

“I want to tell you that a tabloid newspaper is exposing LGBTIs both in the corporate and other local celebrities in Uganda.  I got the papers yesterday.”

Gabi: “If you can translate we can share on our website.”

HelloDaily-cover2“It is in English. This exposure places LGBTIs in the corporate world to more danger just like the ones we have moved out .”

Click the images to see the covers larger.


Please make a donation so we can fund more LGBTQ people who are in hiding waiting for aid to get out of Uganda.

FUST-PayPalClick the button above to use PayPal or a credit or debit card.
Or to send a check see this page.

Thank you!

23 Mar

News: “Government spent over 600M on PR campaign over anti-gay law” AND from last October, “Tough sell marketing Uganda to gay travellers”

Government spent over 600M on PR campaign over anti-gay law

March 19, 2015 | NTV

“Government used over Shs600 million to clear Uganda’s image in the US congressional caucus after the controversy raised by the endorsement of the anti-gay law.”

See: http://www.ntv.co.ug/news/local/19/mar/2015/government-spent-over-600m-pr-campaign-over-anti-gay-law-5011

[fruitful_sep]And this one from last October that we hadn’t seen before:

Tough sell marketing Uganda to gay travellers

October 19. 2015 | NTV | By AFP

“Uganda is probably the last place a gay holidaymaker would want to visit, but tourism bosses in the east African nation are nevertheless trying to achieve the seemingly impossible. …

“Selling Uganda to gays is one of several curious initiatives the Ugandan Tourism Board has come up with this year as it tries to counter a drop in tourism — a key earner for impoverished Uganda that accounts for 8.4 per cent of GDP.”

See: http://www.ntv.co.ug/news/lifestyle/01/oct/2014/tough-sell-marketing-uganda-gay-travellers

05 Feb

Shocking Comments by Republican Human Rights Chairman

February 5, 2015 – African HRC Staff

Human Rights Chairman – ‘Homosexual Rights Are Not Human Rights’ Chris Smith

Republican Chris Smith of New Jersey, who currently serves as a senior member on the Foreign Affairs Committee, and is chairman of its “Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organization Subcommittee,”  has come under fire for comments he made during a January 27th subcomittee hearing-
He boldly told the panel- “I am a strong believer in traditional marriage, and do not construe homosexual rights as human rights.” Smith made his comments before badgering a witness as to whether “the Obama administration has hindered U.S. aid to Nigeria by supporting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community.”

Read more here: http://www.africanhrc.org/#!Shocking-Comments-by-Republican-Human-Rights-Chairman/c1bm0/54d3ab830cf27bee9f08e2c3

30 Jan

NEWS: Nine young gay men, attacked by mob, arrested and tortured by Uganda police – They were subject to torture in jail

28 January 2015 | by Joe Morgan | Gay Star News

Nine young gay men, who were attacked by a homophobic mob, were arrested by Uganda police and tortured while in jail.

They could face charges of sodomy, and could be punished with life imprisonment.

Read the whole article here: http://www.gaystarnews.com/ARTICLE/NINE-YOUNG-GAY-MEN-ATTACKED-MOB-ARRESTED-AND-TORTURED-UGANDA-POLICE280115

28 Jan

The First Ugandan Transgender Love Story (VIDEO)

by Jonny von Wallström
Huffington Post / 12/09/2014

“For the past 18 months I’ve been working on a documentary called The Pearl of Africa, which captures a personal story about love, hate and being transgender in one of the world’s most transphobic places, Uganda.

“I first met Cleopatra Kambugu in June 2012 when I was introduced to her through friends. I was fascinated by her determination to be the first Ugandan transgender woman accepted for her true gender identity. Despite the hate and violent history in her country, she wanted to humanize trans people.”

Read the whole article here:

The YouTube channel for all six episodes of The Pearl of Africa” including the one above are at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCP4iXOk2RqiXsAZA0nRO_hQ

Website for the film “The Pearl Of Africa”where you can learn more about it and about Cleo: http://pearlofafrica.tv/