Timeline of Events

History affecting and influencing the trans and intersex
movement in Africa

This timeline of the history of the trans and intersex movement in Africa emerged through the grassroots experiences and memories of the contributing African activists and organisations. It is often updated with new stories and the timeline is continually growing.

How to navigate the timeline

Categories are displayed alphabetically at the top of the timeline and can be used to filter the results to focus on the research theme chosen.

  • COMMUNITY – A person’s contribution, experience or accomplishment
  • DIASPORA – Experience or accomplishment from a trans or intersex person originally from Africa
  • INTERSEX – The entry only relates to the intersex movement or community
  • LGBTIQ – An event that also had an effect or influence on the trans and intersex movement
  • ORGANISATION – Contributions from African Organisations
  • TIME LINE STORIES – All the entries from all the categories
  • TRANS – The entry only relates to the trans movement or community

Gender categories have flag icons and colour groups to visually distinguish them from one another:

  • All
  • Community
  • Diaspora
  • Intersex
  • Legislation
  • LGBTIQ
  • Organisation
  • Trans
  • Trans & Intersex
  • Uncatogorised
  • 2010

    SistaazHood Founded, South Africa

    SistaazHood is the first sex worker support group in South Africa, founded by trans women who were part of the Sex Worker Education and Advocacy Taskforce (SWEAT) based in Cape Town. Led by trans women sex workers, Sistaazhood focuses its support and advocacy specifically on trans women sex workers. SistaazHood was founded after an initial …

    SistaazHood Founded, South Africa Read More »

  • May 2010

    Auntie Tiwonge and Steven Monjeza Sentenced, Then Pardoned, Malawi

    In May 2010, Auntie Tiwonge and Steven Monjeza were sentenced to 14 years of hard labour after being arrested on charges of gross indecency for publicly celebrating their relationship the previous year.  However, Malawian President Mutharika reversed this decision after a meeting with UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, and gave the couple a full pardon. Homosexuality …

    Auntie Tiwonge and Steven Monjeza Sentenced, Then Pardoned, Malawi Read More »

  • May 2010

    Birth of the Namibian Trans Movement, Namibia

    The Trans Activist Movement of Namibia was founded, operating as a trans desk at the LGBT organisation, Out-Right Namibia (ORN).

  • May 2010

    Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme: Year 1, Part 1

    The first part of the Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme, hosted by Gender DynamiX (GDX) and a partner organisation from East Africa, was launched in Namibia. It was with great excitement that the 16 activists met, and there was a very energetic buzz in the room, as participants had great …

    Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme: Year 1, Part 1 Read More »

  • June 2010

    First Inter-Continental Trans and Intersex Advocacy Meeting

    Global Action for Trans Equality (GATE) organised the first of its kind, international trans and intersex advocacy meeting in Barcelona, Spain, with participants from all regions and all continents. The meeting consisted of 2 parts. June 1–3 was the Trans* Action = Trans* Rights pre-conference, followed by the International Congress on Gender Identity and Human …

    First Inter-Continental Trans and Intersex Advocacy Meeting Read More »

  • June 2010

    Transgender Education & Advocacy (TEA) Assists Trans Women with Official Name Change Applications, Kenya

    Transgender Education & Advocacy (TEA) successfully filed change of name applications on behalf of 3 trans women. Their names were changed in their passports, but the Kenyan state failed to carry these changes through to their national identity cards.

  • June 2010

    Lusophone Trans Workshop, Mozambique

    For the first time on the African continent, a Lusophone* trans workshop was presented by IGLHRC (the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, today known as OutRight International) and Gender DynamiX (GDX) in Maputo, Mozambique. Due to language barriers, it is extremely difficult to establish networks in Mozambique and Angola where the main spoken …

    Lusophone Trans Workshop, Mozambique Read More »

  • 13 August 2010

    Labour Court Rules in Favour of Trans Woman, South Africa

    The South African Labour Court ruled in favour of reinstating Christine Elhers after she took her employer, Bohler Uddeholm, to court for unfair discrimination and for dismissing her based on her gender identity. Judge Francis not only ruled for reinstatement but ordered the company to backpay Christine the salary she had lost between her dismissal …

    Labour Court Rules in Favour of Trans Woman, South Africa Read More »

  • September 2010

    Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme: Year 1, Part 2

    The second part of the Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme hosted by Gender DynamiX (GDX) and a partner organisation in East Africa* achieved two tangible and practical results. The first was that the 16 activists finalised the details for the “MSM/WSW & Trans Position Paper”, and it was released internationally …

    Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme: Year 1, Part 2 Read More »

  • 26 November 2010

    2010 – The first Trans Health & Research Pre-conference in Africa

    November 2010 – Gender DynamiX hosted the pre-Trans Health, Research and Advocacy Conference in Hout Bay, Western Cape, South Africa. The purpose of the pre-conference was to create awareness around the baseline situation experienced by trans people throughout South Africa – both in rural spaces and cities where there is, at minimum, a basic level …

    2010 – The first Trans Health & Research Pre-conference in Africa Read More »

  • December 2010

    Registration of Rainbow Identity Association (RIA), Botswana

    After its launch in February 2008, Rainbow Identity Association (RIA) was officially registered by the National Registrar of Societies as the first trans and intersex persons and community in Botswana

  • 2011

    Trans Woman, Sues the State for the Right to Gender Marker Change, Botswana

    Batswana trans woman, Tshepo Ricky Kgositau, applied to the Civil and National Registration office in Gaborone, Botswana to change her documentation in the national register from male to female in 2011. She argued that the State has a duty to realise the constitutional protection of rights and amend her Omang (identity document), as “her birth-assigned …

    Trans Woman, Sues the State for the Right to Gender Marker Change, Botswana Read More »

  • April 2011

    Formal Launch of  Transgender and Intersex Africa (TIA), South Africa

    While Transgender and Intersex Africa (TIA) was founded in 2010, it officially ‘opened its doors’ in Pretoria and became formally known in 2011. Its founder, Tebogo Nkoana, worked at Gender DynamiX (GDX) until TIA was founded in 2010. TIA began working in the northern areas of South Africa, focusing on rural areas and townships.

  • April 2011

     IAAF Passes New Policy on Gender Verification

    The events of Caster Semenya’s gender verification spiralled into an international debate about intersex* conditions and gender. The IAAF (International Amateur Athletic Federation and International Association of Athletics Federations, now known as World Athletics) and the International Olympics Committee (IOC) reviewed its regulations and policies, particularly the sections on routine gender verifications for all female …

     IAAF Passes New Policy on Gender Verification Read More »

  • May 2011

    Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme: Part 1, Year 2

    The first part of the second year of the Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme, hosted by Gender DynamiX (GDX) and a partner organisation from East Africa, took place in Uganda in May 2011. This was a watershed workshop as the number of activists, who numbered 16 the year before, grew …

    Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme: Part 1, Year 2 Read More »

  • May 2011

    Social, Health and Empowerment Feminist Collective of Transgender and Intersex Women of Africa (S.H.E) Established, South Africa

    Social, Health and Empowerment Feminist Collective of Transgender and Intersex Women of Africa (S.H.E) was formally established by Leigh Ann van der Merwe, following the announcement of the organisation’s formation during the regional Exchange Programme. Part of the founding reasons derived from the regional Exchange Programme in May 2011, hosted in Uganda, where trans feminine …

    Social, Health and Empowerment Feminist Collective of Transgender and Intersex Women of Africa (S.H.E) Established, South Africa Read More »

  • June 2011

    Changes Introduced to the Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme

    Due to the way in which participants had progressed and excelled beyond the current format of the workshops, the host’s Gender DynamiX (GDX) and their partner organisation in East Africa, decided to reassess the format of the Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme for 2012 and onwards.  Initially envisioned as a …

    Changes Introduced to the Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme Read More »

  • July 2011

    Formation of a 3-Organisation Coalition, Transitioning Africa (TA)  

    Gender DynamiX (GDX) and their partner in East Africa as co-hosts of the Eastern and Southern African Trans and Intersex Regional Exchange Programme, approached Transgender and Intersex Africa (TIA) to form a 3-organisation coalition, which would be known as Transitioning Africa (TA). The coalition would work together on future projects advocating for the human rights …

    Formation of a 3-Organisation Coalition, Transitioning Africa (TA)   Read More »

  • September 2011

    African Presence at the First International Intersex Forum

    The first International Intersex Forum took place in Belgium in September 2011. 24 Activists representing 17 intersex organisations from all continents were present, including Intersex Society South Africa (ISSA)’s Sally Gross, who was also the correspondent for Africa. The Forum concluded with 3 main goals: 

  • September 2011

    Rainbow Identity Association (RIA) Starts Operating Independently, Botswana

    Rainbow Identity Association (RIA), formed in February 2008, informed Gender Dynamix (GDX)  that the intermediary fiscal hosting term could come to an end, as they had officially registered in 2010 and could begin operating independently in September 2011.  

2010May 2010May 2010May 2010June 2010June 2010June 201013 August 2010September 201026 November 2010December 20102011April 2011April 2011May 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011September 2011September 2011

You can include information about your African Organisation

There are many African organisations and individuals who over the years have contributed in invaluable ways to the story of the Trans and Intersex Movement who is not yet included in our timeline.

We want to acknowledge and include all verifiable contributions.  

You can self-list your organisation by filling in your details: