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Know our elders

Workshop

Total Together has so far executed 15 private visits with beneficiaries.

The concept was created after a flop that occurred with the last organized workshop where 2% of the invited participants showed up at the venue. The expression we had was that of disappointment and concern as we had not expected such a low turn out at a well organized workshop in a secure setup.

The past encounters had their own set of challenges but this one in specific was a cause for concern.

Without further delay we got back to the drawing board and reached out to our registered and confirmand participants who failed to show up, we were seeking an understanding as in what went wrong and the responses ranged from a


  • Fear of exposure to the public

  • Private lifestyle being known by fellow LGBTQ+ members that would have been invited at the session

  • Confidentiality when it came to those in hiding

  • Concerns about security after the session

Our participants are lacking the confidence to fully express themselves in a space with more than two people because of their age, that feel the need to act as heterosexuals' so as to fit in the general community set-up.


In-Call

Another chapter that turned out well was voice notes, well from the 20 people we made contact with. 18 of them preferred to send in voice notes about their lived experiences as LGBTQ+ individuals. The figures expressed are that of people who are gay, the response from the other groups is low with an indi9cation that Lesbians to say have active service uptake compared to the male counterparts who fear coming out to seek life saving services.

Indexing

The overall index used in approach indicated the recent steps in the development of the LGBTIQ+ programs for Total Together and the report sought to identify some of the disparities for the older community. The tracking survey involved asking the respondents how they identified i.e. lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer. The five indicators were


  1. Health and long-term care,

  2. Education,

  3. Economic empowerment,

  4. Food security

  5. Civil participation.

Although frequency on arbitrary arrests and persecution is relatively low in Zimbabwe, it remains an unsafe environment to be fully expressional as an LGBTQ+ identifying elder. The frequency of discrimination, harassment, violence and associated factors among the group of older lesbians, gays, bisexual and Trans identifying individuals has forced many of them to roll up the dice by either going back in the closet or conform


Whats going on?


As we have found out in conversations with older LGBTQ+ individu