News/Blog

A WORD FROM OUR DIRECTOR

As AMKENI enters to strategic plan 2018-2020, the future has a mixture of optimism and caution—optimism because of past success and the opportunities the future can hold and; caution because of the enormous uncertainties of LGBTI in our country. Charting a course into this future requires the organization to establish strategic directions and plans that can ensure success in promoting quality and healthy living among sexual minorities. 

Over the years, AMKENI has grown from men who have sex with men’ Youth support group (2009) to a LGBTI organization in Malindi -North Coast of Kenya. We grew tremendously in numbers and range ofservices offered to LGBTI Members in Kilifi County. This was culminated by collaboration with Red Cross- Kenya to establish a DICE in 2017 and UHAI in (2017) development of this strategic plan 2018-2020. 

Against this background of success, internal and external conditions require AMKENI not rest on its laurels, but explore its future opportunities and possibilities built on the core values anchored in this strategic plan. 

In addition, I would like to take this opportunity to thank: Board, staff, Peer educators, and members for establishing and making AMKENI-“a great pride for all of us”; GALCK and community organizations; KEMRI for hosting and capacity building us over the years; Kenya Red cross Society through Global Fund for technical, and financial support in our health programs and DICE that we all call home. Many thanks to UHAI EASHRI for financial and technical support in drafting of this strategic plan; the county government of Kilifi ( Malindi Sub County , CASCO) who have always been there to help us meet our health needs in SRH/HIV. Lastly, to our implementing partners whom the list is endless for collaborating with us in delivering quality health services for our members. 

I look forward to seeing what this bright future holds for us as we walk through the journey. 

Yours Truly,

Abdulwahid Hassan

Director, AMKENI

STORY TWO

I was living with my family when I came out as gay. This caught a lot of people’s attention that I lost some friends and neighbors gossiped a lot about me whenever I passed across them. I was no longer valued in the family. I saw myself as a shame in the society since no one was ready to hear me out and understand me for who I am. I found my whole life to be meaningless. I had nowhere else to go and this killed me a lot inside. The only solution was for me to let things be the way they are and live with guilt. I was then introduced to Amkeni Malindi by a queer friend who was volunteering as a peer educator in the organization. Since I visited the organization for the first time I came to realize that I was not alone, I met several queer people with different stories of what they’ve been through and this gave me hope. I usually spend most of my time at Amkeni because i feel like this is where i belong i feel like i am home. I forget my sorrows when when i meet and get to interact with my fellow queer friends. Thank you so much Amkeni Malindi for providing such a safe space for people like me.🙏🏼🏳️‍🌈

STORY FROM ONE OF OUR PEERS

I am a male sex worker residing in malindi kisumu ndogo. I also do have a partner whom I don’t trust sexually. Lack of commodities has been the main challenge as a sexworker and also lack of enough money to buy the commodities. It could not pass a month without me getting infected with an STI. I got infected with STI due to the challenges explained above.One afternoon as I was meeting with one of my clients who is also a close friend at the same time,I realised that he came with his own commodities(condoms & lubricant). I was so eager to know where he got them from so I asked about it. The client introduced me to Amkeni Malindi, whereby I also got to sign a membership form and I was offered the commodities including flavoured condoms, lubricant, I was screened for STI and got treated. I got all these services for free.I am really thankful to AMKENI MALINDI for bringing such a program to the MSMs. I can now access the commodities I need and also health services for free.

PEER EDUCATORS TRAINING