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Session: Rainbow Voices from the Margins in Kenya

Type: Other Formats

Break Margins Africa (BMA) is a unique non-profit organisation based in Kenya which is committed to alleviating poverty and restoring dignity to marginalised young gay men in Nairobi, Kenya. BMA’s theory of change relies on economic empowerment and psychosocial support to support these young men in developing potential and building purposeful and meaningful lives. However, many of these guys have encountered numerous adverse childhood experiences and wrestle with various forms of trauma. This presentation discusses two participatory experiences. The first relates to BMA’s staff as they look at where they envision BMA in 2030 and how the LGBTI community might be living. The second experience captures the journey of these young men as they engage with imagining their preferred future, including how traumatic experiences shape their views of the past and hope for the future. Futures thinking is in fact a luxury that many take for granted. When an individual has little agency and a past haunted with trauma, depression, doubt, and self-hatred, thinking about the future can seem futile. The audacity of hope can leave many with only the dream of one day having a dream. Participants will learn critical empathy and the power of the human soul to soar.

Presenters

Francis Kamunya (he/him)

Youth Educator

I am a youth educator whose focus is to help young people find psychosocial and economic empowerment, particularly the young people living on social-economic margins. In doing this, I become an agent of hope, meaning, and purpose in life. I am the founding director of Break Margins Africa, a community-based organisation that offers economic empowerment to disadvantaged young people who hail from slums of Nairobi, through scholarships to pursue professional and technical training so that they can compete favorably in the local job market and/or establish their own businesses. My academic background is in Youth Studies, where I have a BA Youth Ministry from Tangaza University College.

Steven Lichty (he/him)

Managing Partner @ REAL Consulting Group

I am a Nairobi-based consultant working with strategic foresight, research, evaluation, and capacity building across a range of sectors globally. Projects have included access to justice, futures capacity building with local LGBTI groups, youth empowerment, training university students with futures thinking, systems mapping of food security policy reform, evaluating leadership development and global freedom of religion/belief programmes. My PhD was in African Studies, where I explored religious pedagogies of political socialisation in Kenya. My dream is to see more groups across Africa equipped with futures thinking and increased agency to build their own preferred futures.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/steven-lichty/