Today is the anniversary of Alan Turing’s trial. Alan gave money to and fostered the career of a Jewish refugee who escaped from Austria. If alive today, I think Alan would very much like you to honor his legacy by supporting refugees like Geoffrey, who is fighting to better the life of his fellow LGBTQ refugees in Kenya. This is the second in a series of guest posts. Catch up here on the first post. You can find @GeoffreyRainbo on Twitter. — n.s.s.jacobs
I grew up in a religious and highly cultured family. Mum had a grocery and Dad was a motorcycle mechanic, so they could provide not only for our basic needs but also pay school fees. Life for us was happy.
But while attending Boarding School during puberty, I discovered I had strong emotional and sexual feelings for other boys. I was so confused, but I had no one to talk to about it. My religion had taught me that I was a boy who was supposed to only feel this way about girls. I had no idea if there was anyone else like me. I decided to keep all this secret. Everyday, I continued saying the prayers in which people like me were described as demon-possessed.
At school I had a good friend named Abel, who was always gentle to me and never wanted to see me unhappy. We became much closer when both of us had a conversation about gay people, at a time when the news of a pastor who was accused for being gay was trending. As Abel and I spoke, neither of us said anything homophobic.
That evening the other bathrooms were occupied so Abel and I showered together. It was then Abel came out to me — in an act of love. I was overjoyed. I had waited so long and so impatiently to find someone like me. This became our secret.
Then one day as were having our happy time behind the dormitories after school games, we were caught. That was the end of our joy. Sorrow had opened its door.
Our parents were called by the school. Abel and I were beaten badly and expelled. Upon reaching home, I received more and more beatings and heavy punishments. Feeling the pressure around him, my Dad became even more hateful and cruel to me. It got worse and worse, until I couldn’t take it anymore.
That’s how I ended up homeless in the streets of Kampala.
Previous Post: A Voice for the Voiceless: Meet @GeoffreyRainbo, a twenty-three-year-old Ugandan LGBT Refugee
Love and hope to all,@GeoffreyRainbo on Twitter
If you would like to financially support LGBT Refugees in Kenya, whose situation is all the more dire in light of COVID-19, you can DONATE to The Refugees in Kenya Self-Aid campaign, of which I am co-manager. Thank you for your generosity — n.s.s.jacobs
READ MORE ABOUT THE FUND on this website.