UGOM is on the move as the name goes, restructuring day and night from one stage to another. Being looked at as an initiative that would champion the voice of the LGBTIQ asylum seekers especially of African descent by the central governments and the various institution in the Netherlands and the diaspora. It should be remembered that this organization ushered in its operations in the Netherlands at the dawn of 2013 being formed in the quest to unite and make a solid impact for the distressed LGBTIQ asylum seekers who almost had the same problem by then that was related to their asylum claims that were being turned down by the immigration authority in the Netherlands (IND). Some of the factors were crystal clear of such behavior by the immigration because they saw a point of illegitimacy with a lot of these claims. However with the new force ignited by UGOM a lot of petitions were submitted in to the Dutch Tweede Kamer staten General with regard to the status-qua requesting to address this issue. From then this force has put the initiative in many eyes of the Dutch society and the international community. It is because of all these efforts that many came and joined and united in a solidarity that would change trends. This in July of 2015 made UGOM to be recognized of its work with the Stein Stra Honor of 2015.
The UGOM team will on 12th to 15th October be in Antwerp Belgium at Colloquium of African LGBTIQ asylum seekers and proudly on the panel to share our journey on how UGOM has managed to overcome its challenges and share the successes too. This will happen again in Athens Greece were a UGOM representative, general secretary Rhona Bugembe was chosen the winner of the ILGA 2015 Athens Conference scholarship to represent her organization and community.
Plans to explore the possibility for UGOM to becoming a partner of project Deepening Democracy are underway which is expected to yield a lot for the community.
Deepening Democracy is International Oxfam Novib project in which LHBTI rights (and gender dimension) are an integral part of this program for Deepening Democracy worldwide with much emphasis on diversity. Which UGOM for the last three years in existence has maintained to date.
Briefly about Deepening Democracy
The project Deepening Democracy wishes to empower women, youth and otherwise marginalized citizens in seven countries to help them networking and forging alliances to gain more participatory and deliberative democratic rights and exercise more direct influence on the policy cycle, especially regarding:
- [Influencing the political agendas] To mobilize their fellow citizens, organize social movement, develop consensus-based citizens’ agendas, make political representatives and government officials buy into them.
- [Influencing policies and laws] To make people able to understand which policies and laws are being formulated, influence and amend the most pressing policies and laws or propose new policies and laws where these are missing.
- [Influencing the management of the public finances] To help them to be fully informed about how the government is gaining its revenues and allocating its resources, or mobilizing private investment.
We are creating a global alliance of organizations pioneering in this field in Brazil, Uganda, South Africa, Tunisia, Vietnam, Spain and the Netherlands, which will operate as a learning community and jointly develop tools, validate them and make them re-contextualizable.
In almost all countries, no matter how poor or wealthy, serious issues with the functioning of democracy exist. Women, youth and other marginalized people are even worse off, as they are barely represented and their issues are rarely prioritized. They experience what in political science is labeled as a “disruption of the social contract’ or a “democratic deficit”.
It is important for innovative civil society organizations to join forces and enable citizens and citizens’ movements to gain more direct influence on, control over and participation in the different stages of the policy cycle, strengthen their ability to make their political representatives more responsive to their priorities and hold them accountable for their actions.
Great thanks to Mr. Bos and Mr Cadat