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UN Rights and Religion Fellowship

What is the Outright UN Rights and Religion Fellowship?

The Outright UN Rights and Religion Fellowship is a 12-month program that supports lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer (LGBTIQ) human rights defenders from around the world to harness the New York-based United Nations system to add value to their existing work. This year, Outright will select 6 Fellows.

The program is designed to support existing work defending LGBTIQ people from the impact of religiously motivated violence and discrimination in the global South and East.

The aim of the UN Rights and Religion Fellowship is four-fold:


Facilitate the use of online United Nations spaces for LGBTIQ activists from the global South and East to enhance their networks and to identify new entry points for progressing the protection and promotion of LGBTIQ people’s human rights in their country or region.


Increase visibility and engagement of LGBTIQ human rights defenders from the global South and East within high-level UN fora, specifically in response to religiously-motivated homophobia, biphobia, interphobia and transphobia.


Build the capacity of United Nations agencies and state representatives in advancing the human rights of LGBTIQ people.


Strengthen networks, including relationships with New York-based diplomats and organizations that focus on combatting religiously-motivated violence and discrimination.

How it Works

The Outright UN Rights and Religion Fellowship runs from February 2023 – January 2024. The program will focus on key advocacy opportunities, such as the Commission on the Status of Women, the High-Level Political Forum on the Sustainable Development Goals, UN General Assembly High Level week, Outright’s annual UN Advocacy Week, and Outright’s OutSummit Conference. The Fellowship will include advocacy training and regular meetings with Outright staff.


Outright UN Rights and Religion Fellows are expected to attend trainings, meetings and advocacy events online and at least three of the High-Level events in person in New York. They will be required to participate in communications, including social media highlights during sessions and reflection blogs. Fellows will be required to work together on advocacy projects throughout the year. Fellows will also be required to produce a final report of their experience of the fellowship. Moreover, the Fellows will present a grant proposal to continue implementation of their skills back home, at the end of their fellowship.


Fellows will be funded to travel to three of these four meetings, each of which generally lasts 1 to 2 weeks. Funding includes roundtrip airfare, accommodations, visa fees, ground transportation, and per diem. The Fellow will also be provided with a micro-grant of USD$5,000.00 to support implementation of their newly acquired skill-set into their work in their home country.


Outright’s UN Rights and Religion Fellows should:

  • Reside and work in the global South or East
  • Demonstrate an interest and track record in advocacy aimed at advancing the rights of LGBTIQ people
  • Be available and committed to participate in high-level meetings in the United Nations calendar in New York
  • Be fluent in written and spoken English

Experience working with the UN system, including UN agencies and human rights mechanisms, is NOT a prerequisite for this Fellowship.

Women, trans, gender non-conforming, and intersex human rights defenders are especially encouraged to apply.

Next Steps

If you are an LGBTIQ activist from the global South or East and feel you or your organization will benefit from taking part in Outright’s UN Rights and Religion Fellowship, please fill out the questionnaire below.

Applications are due by 13 December 2022. The successful applications will be confirmed late January 2023.


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