17th May is the International Day Against Homophobia & Transphobia. The date of May 17th was specifically chosen to commemorate the World Health Organization's decision in 1990 to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder.
In almost 80 countries around the world, loving someone of the same sex is still considered illegal, at times involving lifetime imprisonment and, in nine countries, it is even punishable by death!
And in many more countries still, citizens are denied their right to live according to their preferred gender identity.
As well as legal discriminations, social homophobia and transphobia serve to daily deny millions of people across the world their basic human dignity.
The International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) was created in 2004 to draw the attention of policymakers, opinion leaders, social movements, the public and the media to this issue.
It is not one centralised campaign; rather it is a moment that everyone can take advantage of to take action.
Joe - Mentoring
The programme had such an impact on my life that I decided to come on board as a volunteer mentor!
Abimbola- First Point
It has been a long time since I felt that someone actually listened to me.
Peter- First Point
I felt so relieved to have a named First Point worker who I can call if I need to be referred to a particular service.
Michael - Counselling
I gained a huge amount of help from the counselling service and would like to thank the service for offering so much support.
Joan - First Point
Thank you so much for taking time to listen to me and truly understand how I am feeling. This is the only appointment I've had regarding HIV that didnít feel rushed.
Ebere - First Point
I wish this service was around when I was newly diagnosed. I felt my world had fallen apart around me and I didn't know which way to turn for support. You are offering a very valuable service.
Simon - Mentoring
By discussing things at such an intimate level with my mentor, I really came face to face with some of the reasons why I was taking chances before.
Kwasi - Mentoring
During the 6 month programme, I developed a close relationship with my mentor. Knowing that I would have to talk to him honestly about what I did in the previous 2 weeks somehow forced me to be safe every time I had an encounter.
Sarah - Counselling
The help and understanding I experienced from everyone I came into contact with whilst using the Metroís services was amazing.
David - Counselling
Outstanding people. Outstanding service. Outstanding counselling. Truly something that has allowed me to turn my life around.