Since graduating from Quest in 2020, Okong’o Kinyanjui has been on an exciting journey. Kinyanjui has become the executive director and co-founded of QAN (Queer African Network); recently his organization has received recognition, funding, awards, and leadership training.
Our president, George Iwama, was delighted to receive an email update from Kinyanjui,
“Since returning to Kenya after graduation, I started an organization inspired by my Keystone. . .”
The Queer African Network is a social and professional networking platform for LGBTQI+ persons of African heritage. The network is a comprehensive digital information hub that operates through globally crowdsourcing.
With the platform, its members can socialize, find safe opportunities, access affirming content, and publish information. As a result of QAN, mobilization on LGBTQI+ has been accelerated and individuals have a safe way to connect and thrive as their authentic selves.
In his email, Kinyanjui shared,
“In June we were selected for the Young Feminist Award. . .[and] Yesterday, I was selected as one of 18 chosen from a pool of 1500 applicants (from over 100 countries) for the Echoing Green Fellowship.”
The Young Feminist Award is in the amount of $5000 USD, awarded to QAN by the Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations in New York.
As for the Echoing Green Fellowship, Kinyanjui’s Organization will receive $80,000 USD in seed funding, as well as leadership training.
“Echoing Green’s support will go a long way in furthering our work in racial equity. . .Our web app currently has 1000 users from over 18 countries who are making meaningful social connections, receiving tailored opportunity recommendations, and accessing affirming content.”
Quest loves to hear from it’s alums and is proud of the change Okong’o Kinyanjui is making in the world. Our community looks forward to future updates and hopes for the continued growth of the QAN organization.
Contributed by Derek Nobert