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November 09, 2019

IPSK advocates on behalf of intersex Kenyans

type: Education, NGO
by: Yair Oded

After a long and hard-fought battle in courtrooms, parliament, and the streets, human rights activists managed to persuade the Kenyan government to recognise intersex people in its census. 

A task-force was then created by Kenya’s Attorney General, and was mandated to, among other things, gather comprehensive data on intersex Kenyans, record their challenges, examine the ways in which existing policies affect them, and make recommendations on how to best protect this vulnerable population.

While the government’s move to include the intersex population (which according to conservative figures stands at 700,000 people) in its census is a step in the right direction, and will undoubtedly lead to improvements in their access to healthcare and education in the long-run, intersex Kenyans continue to face significant challenges in their daily lives.

One of the primary causes of difficulty is public’s lack of knowledge and acceptance of intersex individuals, and the latter continue to be frequent targets of discrimination and abuse - both physical and verbal. 

The Intersex Persons Society of Kenya (IPSK) is a Nairobi-based non-profit organisation working to uplift the intersex community in a growing number of counties across Kenya and advocate on their behalf.

Since its establishment in 2016, IPSK has been concentrating its efforts in three main areas: engaging the Kenyan government in discussions about how the intersex community could participate in its agenda, conducting media and community outreach campaigns to raise public awareness and educate communities around Kenya about the challenges of intersex individuals, and providing counselling to parents of intersex kids in order to help them best accommodate their children. 

Please visit the organisation’s website to learn more about their mission, support their efforts, or help spread the word about their work on social media

If you or anyone you know in Kenya is in need of IPSK’s support or counselling, you may contact them here

Image: IPSK