Nigerian NGOs Take an Intersectional Approach to Transformative Change
Originally coined by American civil rights advocate and critical race theory scholar Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, “intersectionality” refers to systems of oppression like racism, sexism, homophobia, and ableism that intersect and create multiple levels of injustice. In Nigeria, groups like the Women’s Health and Equal Rights (WHER) Initiative and Intersex Nigeria are joining together to acknowledge the myriad ways they are connected and to address these intersectional layers of injustice. “Important for all of us to lend our voices and join our hands to ensure that there are measures, systematic measures, put in place to ensure that persons with disabilities, regardless of their sexual orientation and gender identity, have their rights,” says Akudo Oguaghamba, executive director of the WHER Initiative. “In order for us to harmonize the work that we do in the LGBTQ community and the OPD [organization of persons with disabilities], it is important for us to create a constant platform for conversation. We need to talk more. We need to develop strategies together. And it is also important for us to look for resources collectively to ensure that we create sustainable change with LGBT people, people with disabilities, LGBT people with disabilities.”
Editing assistance by Ziyu Peng
Benedicta Oyedayo Oyewole is an intersectional feminist passionate about disability and women's rights. Working and living at the nexus of multiple identities, she is interested in the interconnectedness of sexuality, disability, climate, and gender justice. She currently works as a program officer of diversity and inclusion at the Women's Health and Equal Rights (WHER) Initiative, a nonprofit focused on promoting the rights and well-being of lesbian, bisexual, and queer (LBQ) women in Nigeria. Her dream is to travel the world, document, and explore how the multiplicities of our identities - sexuality, gender, ability, presentation, and upbringing - shape how we engage with and think about ‘desire.’
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