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In honour of Kirvan Fortuin and Sarah Hegazy

‘This country buries us before we are born. Calls us by our obituaries before it calls us by our names’ – Koleka Putuma 

The current global moment has seen Black people across the world loudly fighting against and pushing back on centuries of violence and oppression, demanding freedom from violence and demanding the freedom to create alternative futures. It is both a moment charged with immense power and one that reminds us of the importance of breath – the power of the breath that has sustained us and the power of breath as it leaves us. 

We honor Kirvan Fortuin, choreographer, dancer and LGBTIQ+ activist. 

We honor Sarah Hegazy, LGBTIQ+ activist who ceremoniously flew the rainbow flag at a Rock concert in Egypt.

We value their commitment to live in their truth – we value their commitment to using that truth, their talents and indeed their breath to create and contribute to movements and moments that demanded and continue to demand justice and freedom for queer people on the African continent. 

While acknowledging the power we yield individually and collectively to bring about a just world, we also hold the damage this world has caused us. We break and are breaking – in our hearts, in our spirits, in our bodies. Constantly. Continuously. Across borders. Across time zones. Across continents. Women who are black and brown. Queer people who are black and brown. We live complex lives, violent lives, colourful lives, lonely lives. Lives filled with creativity, lives lived with love. Lives targeted by hatred. 

May we hold ourselves and each other in wholeness. May we acknowledge and celebrate the love and beauty that persists in us all. May we hold with compassion and kindness the parts of us that have been hurt. May we harness our collective power to make visible everything about us and in us that this world tries to silence, to kill. May we harness our collective power to demand accountability, to bring light to, and therefore eradicate violence in all its manifestations. May we harness our collective power to build futures that hold us and nurture us. 

May all our people whose life and breath have been lost in this world find peace and restoration. May we hold their memory as we hold each other. 

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