From fighting AIDS to demanding rights: LGBT activism in Senegal

Fellows 2017

By Sarah Elzas

June 06, 2017

Also published by Radio France Internationale

Listen to the full story on RFI.


Senegal is one of Africa’s success stories when it comes to fighting HIV and AIDS: less than one per cent of the population is infected today. As part of the public health effort, officials recognized the need to reach out to those most at risk of passing on the virus: sex workers, drug users and gay men. 

They encouraged them to get organised. As a result, today there are nearly a dozen LGBT groups in a country that is predominantly Muslim, and where homosexual acts are illegal. And gay men and women are increasingly thinking about rights, beyond public health.