President of Other Sheep Africa – Rev. Michael Kimindu – reviews the year 2013

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NAIROBI, KENYA.  REV. MICHAEL KIMINDU.  DECEMBER 18, 2013.

OTHER SHEEP AFRICA 2013 REVIEW

The vision of Other Sheep Africa (OSA) is to have a continent where sexual, gender and other minorities enjoy peace, justice and human rights.

In order to further this vision, OSA conducts seminars for clergy and lay leaders on various topics aimed at providing correct information and education on human sexuality, religion and homosexuality, the Bible and same sex relationships. We also cover culture, science and their relationship with same sex attractions.

In the year under review, the work consisted of three key areas:

1. Inter-faith.
2. OSA and Donor Relation meetings, and
3. National Baseline Survey.

The three did not take place in a chronological order for obvious reasons.

The year started with a meeting between OSA and the Foundation of Open Society Initiative (FOSI) – Kenya office, referred to as Open Society Initiative Of East Africa(OSIEA). The purpose of the meeting was a follow up of a discussion for possible funding. It was attended by three members of OSA and two from OSIEA on the 10th of January.

On February 9th, we embarked on marathon National Baseline Survey to gauge the religious leaders’ levels of awareness on sexual, gender and other minorities (SGOM) with the first seminar held at Kyambeke representing the eastern region of Kenya. The survey was conducted through a guided questionnaire consisting of 36 questions. After the audience completed the exercise, we followed up with a Q & A session and these were very lively. This survey was funded by the British High Commission in Nairobi. It took us four months to complete as will be noticed from the report.

On February 14th, OSA brought together 30 Christian and Muslim leaders for a one day Inter-faith conference at Mombasa, sponsored by the Canadian High Commission.  It was graced by the High Commissioner himself as the main guest who gave a very informative key note address on human rights. He assured us of continued support.

The following is a schedule of successive Baseline Survey Seminars and the regions in which they took place, as well as other meetings including my visit to the USA:

23rd February – Western- Kaimosi.  

13th March – Coast-Mombasa

27th March – Nyanza-Kisumu

On 8th April we had a second meeting with Open Society Initiative of East Africa

11th April – Muslims’ Baseline Survey – Mombasa

16th April – British High Commission invited OSA to a Grantees’ Meeting.

18th April – Central-Karatina Baseline Survey

24th April – Rift Valley-Kajiado  Baseline Survey

30th April – the launching of OSA National Theological Committee for Kenya.

6th May – Other Sheep Africa/Neema MCC/Global Justice Institute Meeting at Serena hotel-Nairobi

14th May – OSA participated in Canadian High Commission Round table discussion on LGBTI community in East Africa [Kenya]

1st-5th July – I attended the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) General Conference in Chicago USA.

  • 6th July – travelled to Indiana.
  • 7th July – worshiped at St Paul’s Eps. Indianapolis and introduced OSA, and later attended Life Journey MCC church invited by Senior Pastor Jeff Minor.

         That evening I had dinner with Prof. Carol the Lemons partners with Moi Referral Hospital Eldoret

8th July – Visited CTS as Alumina shared about OSA /MCC.

Attended farewell party for Joyce Krauser, a Christian theological seminary secretary who was retiring. I am an Alumni of CTS and at the party I was able to meet four faculty members with whom I shared my calling to OSA.  I am now on their mailing list.

9th July – Tour by bus to New Jersey  and New York facilitated by Stan Kimer and Life Journey MCC. Meeting my cousin Elkanah in New Jersy.

29th July – 1st August – OSA invited to attend Chicago Consultation at Limuru – St. Paul’s University.

7th August – OSIEA meeting with Washington Rep. Michael  Heflin in Nairobi to discuss funding.

30th August – God Loves Uganda film facilitation at Methodist Guest House, Nairobi.

2nd September – God Loves Uganda – Kisumu

3rd September – IAM/OSA Seminar for Anglican Church of Kenya,  Kisumu

11th September – attended reception at British Deputy HC ‘s Residence where I made many useful contacts.

9th– 12th October – Open For Change Conf. Rotterdam-The Netherlands, invited by Hivos to talk about OSA

24th October – Championed the Launch of the United Coalition of Affirming Africans-Kenya (UCAA-K) of which I was elected Chair person.

28th October – Live interview with K24 on LGBT inclusion.

20th November – Post GAFCON Conference for Maseno South Anglican Diocese in Kisumu where I was invited to talk about PFLAG

20th December – March 2014, start a three month Canadian HC sponsored Advocacy in six Counties.

CONCLUSION

From the above report, you will note that there is positive change of attitude by the religious groups in Kenya.  It is our hope and determination to replicate this in other countries.

It is important to mention friends who have either helped us and or are considering support.

Supported already:  The Open Society, The Ford Foundation, The British High Commission, and The Canadian High Commission

Considering to support:  Hivos, and Arcus Foundation.

Other Sheep (USA) has been and continues to be our inspiration in their philosophy of “connecting people with people and people with resources.”

Rev.Michael Nzuki Kimindu, STM (USA) P
resident and CEO of Other Sheep Africa (OSA)
18th Dec. 2013

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