OutRight Now: October 2021 Newsletter

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Dear Friends,

It seems like only yesterday, and yet a lifetime ago, OutRight launched the COVID-19 Global LGBTIQ Emergency Fund to support our communities around the world in addressing the mounting vulnerabilities faced by LGBTIQ people as a result of the pandemic. To date, we have held two rounds of calls for proposals, issued USD $3.2M in grants to 310 groups in more than 102 countries, reaching an estimated 145,000+ people. Today we opened a new call.

Almost two years into the pandemic, as the news has moved on from lifting of pandemic-related restrictions to access to booster shots in much of the western world, we know that most of Africa and many countries in Asia are only beginning to roll out first doses. And, as we know well from this and other crisis situations, relief and recovery efforts often exclude LGBTIQ people. As such, for our communities around the world the pandemic is far from over, and in response today OutRight is launching our third call for applications to the Emergency Fund. 

Key to moving forward through this pandemic is mass proliferation of the COVID-19 vaccine which, to date, have not seen equitable distribution across countries and communities. Therefore the new call for proposals centers on the need to address intersections of the LGBTIQ community and COVID-19 vaccines, whether that is working on improving access, raising awareness about vaccines among the community, or supporting vaccine access for LGBTIQ people in some other way. 

Applications are available here in English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish until November 22, 2021. Please spread the word! Thank you to all the supporters who have made this fund possible!

With best wishes,

Paul Jansen
Senior Advisor for Global Advocacy
OutRight Action International


  • OutRight welcomed our new Director of Law and Policy, Neela Ghoshal (she/her) to the Senior Management Team and overall team at OutRight. Read about Neela here.

  • In September OutRight convened an Africa regional experts meeting on eradicating so-called conversion therapy - increasingly called sexual orientation and gender identity change efforts to counter the myth that conversion is possible and recognize that these practices are not a legitimate form of therapy. This convening brought together a diverse group of 25 LGBTIQ activists, survivors of conversion practices, lawyers, medical and mental health professionals, faith leaders, and human rights experts from West, East and Southern Africa, to share experiences and best practices in tackling the harmful practices, and work together towards eradicating them.

  • With support from Google.org, OutRight is proud to announce the release of a Spanish-language version of our “Pride Around the World” briefing - first published in June 2021 - which reveals that, “Pride events are held in over half the countries in the world. They take many forms, and sizes, in some places celebrating progress and diversity, in others protesting and demanding recognition and protection of rights.”

  • OutRight's Arabic Media Program which works with journalists and editors in the Middle East and North Africa region, offers training on appropriate terminology and concepts surrounding LGBTIQ topics, and aims to improve portrayal of LGBTIQ people in the media, held an interactive training session. 19 participants from 5 countries in the region (Syria, Iraq, Bahrain, Yemen and Tunisia) took part over the course of 3 days.

  • OutRight's staff held several safety and security training sessions for LGBTIQ people in Sudan, Egypt and Aceh province in Indonesia. Topics covered personal safety, measures that can be taken to secure community spaces, as well as digital security.

Get to Know Us

Meg Rosensweet

Jonta Saragih

Jonta Saragih (he/him/his) is OutRight's Indonesia Program Officer based in Indonesia. He works with partners spanning LGBTIQ organizations, legal aid, and media institutions at championing anti-discrimination policies at a local level within the Eastern Indonesia region. Prior to joining OutRight he worked on HIV activism, and on advancing public perceptions of the LGBTIQ community in Indonesia through engaging with the media and religious leaders.

Jonta is a night owl, and doesn't mind late evening meetings so that he can join OutRight's staff around the world on zoom. When not working, he enjoys tropical beaches and cooking, especially for friends over gin and tonic.


OutRight in the Media

  • Acting Executive Director Maria Sjodin is interviewed by AP about the US issuing the first passport with an X gender marker.

  • Thomson Reuters published an investigation into so-called conversion therapy, referencing OutRight's research into the global prevalence of the harmful practices.

  • Forbes highlighted OutRight's Pride partnership with Michael Kors.

  • OutRight issued a press release about the Court of Appeals in Botswana holding a hearing in the case decriminalizing same-sex relations. The press release is published in full on the Dallas Voice.

Term of the Month


This year's International Pronouns Day fell on 20 October 2021. In addition to the gendered pronouns she/her/hers and he/him/his, they/them is also increasingly more widely used. However, despite not being directly gendered, the singular they/them assumes that one does not know the gender of the individual being referred to, as opposed to them not having one. As such, in recent years neo-pronouns have become more prominent. Neopronouns are used as an entirely neutral and genderless alternative to the singular they/them/theirs. Neopronouns include xe/xem/xir and zhe/hir/hirs.



    OutSummit, OutRight’s annual global conference for the human rights of LGBTIQ people, will take place virtually on December 8-10. OutSummit is held to coincide with and in honor of Human Rights Day, marked annually on December 10, to serve as a reminder that the human rights of LGBTIQ people are human rights. This year’s theme goes back to basics - human rights for LGBTIQ people everywhere! Thank you to our  partners and sponsors for making OutSummit possible!

  • Join our next OutTalks on Thursday, November 18 to learn more about OutRight's OutStanding Legacy Circle for donors who want to invest in the global movement for LGBTIQ human rights and equality through a planned gift from their estate. You’ll hear from estate planning attorneys, LGBTIQ philanthropy experts, and OutRight donors who have already joined the OutStanding Legacy Circle. Learn more and register here.

  • Save the date for OutRight's annual Gala, Celebration of Courage, which will take place at the TriBeCa Rooftop in New York City on 6 June, 2022. Stay tuned for sponsorship opportunities and ticket sales, and event information in months to come!


Get Involved

  • Did you know that OutRight now accepts donations of cryptocurrency? As the adoption and use of cryptocurrency continues to grow globally, there has also been an exponential increase in crypto philanthropy - or donors giving their cryptocurrency to favorite causes. In fact, OutRight has already raised more than $16,000 from new donors since June of 2021, including our first non-fungible token (NFT) donation from Uncanny Unicorns. Consider donating with cryptocurrency or NFTs to help OutRight advance LGBTIQ rights around the world. Learn more and donate here.