Interview Nadim Uddin | Read Time 3-5 Minutes.
The Covid-19 pandemic has had severe impact on business across the globe. However, one of the most impacted industries is the charitable sector. In 2020, Global Pulse outlined in their study that 57% of charities won’t survive longer than 12 months if there’s no government intervention. One of the primary reasons for the charitable industry’s expected decline is that volunteers cannot provide their vital work during the multiple lockdowns in the UK.
As a result, LGBT Lawyers feels it’s essential for us to help spread the word about such incredible LGBT+ charities. By raising awareness for these LGBT+ charities, we hope to ensure that they can continue to provide such valuable support for the community members.
The African Rainbow Family: Interview with Nadim Uddin
Today is a special day as we got to catch up with Nadim Uddin, a member of the African Rainbow Family Charity. He handles the African Rainbow Family’s social media, marketing, and online presence.
Firstly, who are the African Rainbow Family?
The African Rainbow Family (ARF) is a non-for-profit charitable organisation that supports lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender intersexual and queer (LGBTIQ) people of African heritage and the wider Black Asian Minority Ethnic groups.
ARF was established in 2014 by a lesbian in the wake of some Commonwealth countries in Africa’s toxic and draconian anti-gay laws; persecutions and environment which seek to criminalise LGBTIQs for the preference of whom they choose to love.
Our team are lesbian, gay, bi and trans people from here and abroad, created, run, and led by people who are affected by the issues we are aiming to change. We understand each other, have got together to help each other, and say to each other ‘It’s OK to be different’.
We are a self-help collective, creating social change through the combination of systematic factors to influence government policies on LGBT+ asylum application claims, network with a diverse social and political organisation in the LGBT+ community.
Why did you join the African Rainbow Family charity?
I joined African Rainbow Family because it supports communities like me, who face constant harassment, hate crimes and discrimination heaped on them by an ignorant society because of their sexuality or sexual preferences and or gender identity. African Rainbow Family is like a big family to me. Since I join African Rainbow Family it helps me to remove isolation and support my emotional wellbeing through counselling and other confidence building and empowerment activities.
Is the charity still taking on volunteers with covid-19?
In short, yes, we are!
The African Rainbow families heavily rely on volunteers to deliver the crucial and lifesaving work that we do for People Seeking Asylum and Refugees. Especially during Covid-19, the work for our volunteers increased massively. Due to lockdown and all the pandemic restrictions, most of our members become isolated and lonely. Also, a lot of our members become depressed because of isolation and loneliness. We try to do as many as possible virtual events and activities to help our members. To host these activities, we need volunteers.
Where do you hope to see the African Rainbow Family weekend celebration in 5 years?
In 5 years’ time we want African Rainbow Family branches to be in every city in the UK providing our services to LGBTIQ people in need of us. We also hope to make a contribution to change the UK government’s hostile environment and toxic approach to people seeking asylum and refugees.
“We remove isolation and support our emotional wellbeing through counselling and other confidence building and empowerment activities.”
Quote taken from African Rainbow Family Website
What are the best ways for volunteers to get involved with the charity?
People can volunteer their skills e.g., IT, counselling, fitness trainer, teacher, sports, drawings etc. If people have any skills which our members could benefit from, we can organise meetings or sessions with them to explore their areas of volunteering interest. They can fill out our volunteering application African Rainbow Family.
What are the best methods volunteers can use to fundraise for the charity?
Volunteer’s can fundraise using a range of different methods, such as:
1. Online fundraising through GoFundMe and JustGiving etc platform for the African Rainbow family.
2. Through our website African Rainbow Family Donation page.
3. Donating clothes or other goods.
4. Donating food vouchers for the supermarket.
What events do you have planned this year which people may not know about yet?
Due to Covid-19, we are unable to make any big face to face plans for this year. But we will do virtually:
1. LGBT History Month events
2. International stand up for bullying day
3. Pride events
4. Zero Discrimination day
5. Transgender day of visibility
6. Lesbian day of visibility
7. International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia
8. Bisexual awareness week
9. National coming out day
10. Intersex awareness day
11. World Aids Day
12. Human Rights Day
A huge thank you for all your work with LGBT Lawyers Nadim! We appreciate you answering these questions. For more information on the African Rainbow Family, please visit the website by clicking here. Alternatively, you can visit there Facebook Page.