CSBR hosts Project CARE: A regional program on holistic well-being & the sustainability of queer, trans and intersex activism in Asia
July 9, 2018 – 9:52 am | Comments Off on CSBR hosts Project CARE: A regional program on holistic well-being & the sustainability of queer, trans and intersex activism in Asia

In February 2018, CSBR launched Project CARE: Continuous and Responsive Empowerment through well-being initiatives for LGBTI human rights defenders in SSEA–a regional program in partnership with Asia Pacific Trans Network (APTN), ASEAN SOGI Caucus (ASC), …

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CSBR hosts Project CARE: A regional program on holistic well-being & the sustainability of queer, trans and intersex activism in Asia

Submitted by on July 9, 2018 – 9:52 amNo Comment

In February 2018, CSBR launched Project CARE: Continuous and Responsive Empowerment through well-being initiatives for LGBTI human rights defenders in SSEA–a regional program in partnership with Asia Pacific Trans Network (APTN), ASEAN SOGI Caucus (ASC), APCOM, and ILGA Asia–which seeks to address the sustainability of LGBTIQ organizing through a keen attention to the holistic well-being of LGBTIQ activists, organizers and human rights defenders.

In Phase I of the program, our activities included the following:

  • February 2018: CSBR & ILGA Asia collaborating to integrate a focus on well-being into the Asia Intersex Forum, which brought together 15 intersex advocates from across India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.
    Asia Intersex Forum, Bangkok, February 2018Caption: Asia Intersex Forum, Bangkok, February 2018 (Credit: ILGA Asia)

    Supported by Astrea and ILGA Asia, the forum resulted in the launch of Intersex Asia–the first network led by & for intersex activists in the region. To find out more about Intersex Asia, see their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IntersexAsia/.

 

  • March 2018: CSBR published a contextual summary on Project CARE, which includes a look at evolving international & regional mechanisms to protect human rights defenders, as well as links to pertinent resources on well-being for LGBTIQ communities and WHRDs on digital security, physical security, emergency response grants, toolkits on well-being for feminist activists, and other websites and manuals. Download it here: CSBR-Resource_Building a contextual approach to Holistic Well-Being for LGBTIQ HRDs in SSEA

 

  • April 2018:  ASEAN SOGI Caucus held a regional well-being & wellness workshop for 14 LGBT human rights defenders from Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. Throughout 5 days, activists learned varied approaches to well-being, including from the perspective of psychology as well as body & energy practices from CAPACITAR. Since the workshop, participants have been able to cascade their knowledge and introduce conversations & work on well-being in their home contexts

 

  • May 2018: CSBR & ILGA Asia collaborating to integrate a focus on well-being into a training on human rights mechanisms for East Asian HRDs, bringing together 21 activists from China, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, and Mongolia. For many activists this was the first introduction to the topic as it applies to activism. Together we were able to map common emotional, mental and physical impacts of our work on HRDs, and created space to take small steps as individuals to shift our habits to prevent or mitigate these impacts.

    CSBR-ILGAAsia-EastAsiaWellBeing

    Caption: Participants engaged in mapping out personal well-being for activists (Credit: CSBR)

 

  • June 2018: CSBR & Qbukatabu collaborating on research to support LBTQ movement building in Indonesia. This intervention focused primarily on in-depth interviews and research with key allies from across the women’s movement & faith-based movements in Indonesia on how to strengthen allyship and build support to address the stressors, challenges and need of LBTQ activists in Indonesia.

 

  • June 2018: APCOM released an online survey about LGBTIQ HRDs’ experiences around mental health and well-being in the context of their activism, collecting inputs from activists across the region. One of the primary findings was a consensus that there are not enough spaces or opportunities for activists to discuss and unpack mental health issues, nor is there much awareness or knowledge on friendly and accessible mental health resources for LGBTIQ communities in the region

 

  • July 2018: CSBR collaborating with APTN & PLUHO (People Like Us Hang Out) Malaysia on a two-day workshop on holistic well-being for LBQ women, trans and intersex activists & community members in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
    CSBR-WellBeingWorkshopJuly2018

    Caption: Participants engaged in a visioning exercise on the state of well-being for our communities (Credit: CSBR)

    Over the two days, we brought together 18 people with the aims of creating a reflexive space to:

  •  Share and explore personal lived experiences & sources of support as LBQTI organizers and community members.
  •  Identify contextual stressors & challenges that affect our well-being, particularly as LBTQI organizers and community members.
  • Unpack and explore theory and practice around well-being, self-care & integrated security for activists, as a means of sustaining activism and organizing.
  • Map out existing tools and resources, as well as gaps in what’s available for LBQTI communities.
  • Learn a mix of techniques from psychology, energy healing, and somatic practices to support & strengthen self-reflexivity and resilience.

CSBR’s methodology has drawn primarily from the work of:

  • Interdisciplinary approaches to psychotherapy, including exercises that engage participants in understanding different frameworks & approaches to mental-health, self-reflexivity, resilience and holistic well-being drawing from cognitive behavioral therapy, narrative therapy, arts-based therapy and more.


Responses
to the program so far have affirmed that Project CARE is providing support to strengthen activists’ resilience, by focusing on elements of our personal lived experiences, our activism, and the links to our professional and community organizing that are often overlooked.


Stay tuned
for updates from Project CARE in the near future!

For more information, email us at: coordinator@csbronline.org.

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