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Merry Queermas: LBGTQ community in Kenya to celebrate their own Christmas

Members of the Kenyan lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQ) community plan to celebrate their own ‘Christmas’ dubbed Queermas.

During Queermas, members of the gay community in Kenya will gather to celebrate with one another as a way of fighting loneliness through the festive season.

The term Queermas is not new in other places of the world where homosexuality has been embraced.

Despite gay sex being criminalized in Kenya, members of LGBTQ community have in recent times come out public to push for recognition.

But most members of the Kenyan LGBTQ community are likely to remain isolated during the Christmas season since they sexual orientation is generally frowned upon.

A member of the community, who only identified herself as Kioko, said that there is a sense of communion whenever they meet as they freely enjoy doing things that they’ve grown up doing and are used to.

“It’s a safe space for us and it feels nice to know you’re not alone,” Kioko said.

According to Kenya’s penal code, homosexuality is punishable by up to 14 years in prison,

Many other African countries criminalize being gay and have their own penalties for perpetrators.