L’initiative Mawjoudin pour L’égalité was founded in 2014 by a group of young activists, feminists and LGBs. Mawjoudin works together with other groups, to advocate the rights of the LGBTIQ community.
In Tunisia, both male and female same-sex sexual activity is illegal and being LGBTIQ is still considered a mental disorder. This results in many LGBTIQ people hiding their true sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. The overall attitude towards non-conforming people leads to high degrees of self-denial and self-hatred amongst teenagers, youngsters and adults.
With PlanetRomeo Foundation funding, Mawjoudin has set up a multifunctional cultural space, where various activities are being organized, like workshops, trainings and cultural events. As this is the first space of its kind in Tunis, it quickly has become a haven for LGBTIQ persons and contributed to the further creation of a queer community in Tunis and their capacity building.
We are proud that people feel at home in the space, and they call it “Darna” (“Our Home” in Tunisian).”
A multifunctional social space has been set up, which is visited by 10 to 15 persons on a daily basis. Here, they can be themselves, talk and exchange ideas and thoughts in a supportive environment. Also, the space provides place for the following:
- The provision of medical, psychological and social support as well as peer to peer counseling for LGBTIQ persons in need.
- At least 3 workshops per month, each with different themes.
- Monthly debates on topics such as gender, sex and feminism.
- Cultural events like bi-monthly film screenings, debates and a music club.
- A queer literature library.
- Office space for Mawjoudin staff members, partner organizations and self-employed LGBTQI people.