UHAI (the Swahili word for well-being) EASHRI is Africa’s first indigenous, activist-led and activist-managed fund supporting LGBTI and sex worker activism in Tanzania, Burundi, Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya. UHAI’s resource allocation decisions are informed by people within the movements, thereby ensuring that funds reach the most promising organizations doing the most critical work to advance the movement. These organizations have included the Uganda Health and Science Press Association (UHSPA), the Human Rights Awareness and Promotion Forum (HRAPF), and the NEST.
Since 2008, UHAI has invested over three million dollars in more than 150 LGBTI and sex worker organizations, serving thousands of people in East Africa. As the top funder based outside of the West, UHAI EASHRI accounts for one in six LGBTI grants and is the ninth largest funder of sex workers’ rights globally.
UHAI is the first to fund the majority of activist organizations in the region, providing critical investment and support to nurture and grow the movement. Through grants, conventions, research, and partnerships, UHAI empowers its partners, challenges systemic barriers to equality, and helps to advance the civil and human rights of LGBTI people and sex workers across the region.
Following are just a few examples of the local East African organizations that UHAI supports:
The Uganda Health and Science Press Association (UHSPA), which successfully lobbied Uganda’s Ministry of Health to pass the “Ministerial Directive on Access to Health Services without Discrimination.” It was the first government act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
The Human Rights Awareness and Promotion Forum (HRAPF), whose petition prompted Uganda’s Constitutional Court to overturn the Anti-Homosexuality Act.
The NEST, whose award-winning film Stories of Our Lives documents the lived experiences of LGBTI persons in Kenya.
Learn more about UHAI’s work here.