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LGBTQ Justice Work in Mtito Andei, Kenya (Dec. 2016)
Mtito Andei, Kenya is a medium size city in Kenya strategically located half way between the two major cities of Nairobi, the capital, and Mombosa on the Indian Ocean Coast. The town is economically depressed, and since it is a major overnight truck stop on the Mombosa – Nairobi route, many women (and some men) resort to prostitution as the only option to support their families. The HIV rate among children in Mtito Andei is very high, and local churches often ostracize sex workers and LGBTQ people.

About two years ago, Metropolitan Community Church pastor Rev. Michael Kimindu relocated his ministry to Mtito Andei since he is originally from that area, and it was underserved in the area of religious and justice ministry. With the assistance of a small number of donors, 2 acres of land were purchased, and a gazebo type structure and a small home for Rev. Kimindu and his family were built.

Currently, Rev Kimindu is building strong alliances within the community with elementary school leaders, a new local university and several community leaders also concerned with the community’s issues. His vision includes some small scale agriculture and vocational training to provide alternatives for local residents, promoting safer sex among sex workers, addressing child abuse issues in local schools, and providing a spiritual home for those who are shunned by their churches. To leverage the property and his resources, Rev. Kimindu has formed a collaborative ministry with Metropolitan Community Churches, Global Justice Institute, Other Sheep and the Kimer-Kamba Cultural Centre.

Our most current step is constructing a small totally enclosed classroom building which will facilitate community meetings and training, and to provide a small office space for Rev. Kimindu along with a small kitchen. Most of the funds have been raised to construct the building, and with construction over the past three months, the building is almost complete!

Our next need is to raise the funds for supplies and equipment for this building since we have just about exhausted our existing funds to complete construction. Below is a cost estimate for variousbuilding equipping needs:

 

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The Global Justice Institute is a joint project of Metropolitan Community Churches and The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries.
Both organizations have long histories of service with LGBT people and our allies, pioneering the movement for LGBT inclusion in communities of faith and advocating for LGBT equality on all fronts.

The Global Justice Institute is partnering with LGBT individuals and organizations around the globe to bring that vision to reality.

We believe people on the ground in particular cultures and contexts are the experts on what will bring needed change and equality. The Global Justice Institute offers supportive resources to help bring that expertise to fruition and change the world one neighborhood, village, tribe, workplace, community of faith at a time

In Pakistan, a “Lesbian Education Project,” conceived of and developed by a small underground group of women in Lahore, has made it possible, with the support of the Global Justice Institute, for women to learn a trade and have a chance at independent lives, free of coerced marriages and familial violence.
In Malaysia, a young Baptist minister came out and founded a congregation of Metropolitan Community Churches with the goal of registering a community center in their space, so that LGBT organizations of all kinds will be able to meet freely and without fear of reprisal.
In the Caribbean, the Global Justice Institute is partnering with social, HIV/AIDS and religious activists to develop strategies to change laws that criminalize LGBT lives, public awareness campaigns to teach acceptance, and to provide safe space for LGBT people to congregate.

In Uganda, a young man chased from his home as a boy because he was gay, has started his own sugar cane business, and with the support of the Global Justice Institute, will hire 10 new field workers, some straight and some LGBT. His dream is of a world where all people work together for the good of the community.

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