Staff

Toni Kruger-Ayebazibwe
Toni Kruger-AyebazibweExecutive Director

Based in Johannesburg.
Pronouns: She, her
Toni Kruger Ayebazibwe was appointed Executive Director in December 2017.
Toni, based in our office in Johannesburg, South Africa, brings a range of expertise stretching from management to technology and design and theology. She has a long history of LGBTI activism, specifically in HIV prevention work, having worked in the design and management of HIV prevention and care programmes for LGBT people at OUT – LGBT Wellbeing. She has strong facilitation skills. In recent years she has worked mostly in the private sector in media and technology management, gaining a solid grounding in human resource management. She was an assistant pastor to the Rev Nokuthula Dhladhla of the House of Prayer and Worship, an independent African church in Soweto.
Toni has a BA degree in Communication Science, English and Philosophy, and an Honours degree in Philosophy. She has completed short courses in Intervention Mapping for AIDS Prevention (University of Maastricht) and Human Resource Management (University of Pretoria) and is currently completing her Master’s degree in Theology at St Augustine College, a private Catholic university in Johannesburg. She is a lay minister in the Anglican Church.

Victoria Petitjean
Victoria PetitjeanProgramme Manager

Based in Paris.
Pronouns: She, her
Victoria Petitjean, is one of GIN’s Programme Managers, since October 2016. She is Franco-British, holds a BSc in Economics and International Development from Bath University and a MPhil in International Relations from Oxford University, and has 7 years of experience in international policy (working at the European Commission, UNESCO and OECD) and human rights work (in South East Asia and East Africa, notably working in NGOs and for local political representatives). Previous to this position, she was Treasurer and Board member of the French LGBT organization, SOS homophobie, and interned at UNESCO, to work on the first UN report examining violence against LGBT youth in schools around the world. She and her partner live in Paris, France.

Pierre Buckley
Pierre BuckleyProgramme Manager

Based in Johannesburg.
Pronouns: He, his
Pierre Trevor Buckley, our second Programme Manager, since January 2018, is a young gay man, a people person, rooted in his faith, an excellent relationship builder and skilled in programmatic work. He is completing a BA degree in Politics and Communication Sciences through the University of South Africa, and was a Mandela Washington Fellow in 2016, completing a Certificate in Civic Leadership through Duquesne University. He is also a licenced Lay Minister in the Anglican Church. He has worked for the Gay and Lesbian Network (GLN - a South African LGBTI organisation based in Pietermaritzburg) for the last three years, most recently as the Operational Manager and was previously on the GLN board. He is a person of colour, and a South African.

Chantel Fortuin
Chantel FortuinPart time facilitator for the Hearts Set on Pilgrimage Retreat

Based in Gaborone
Pronouns: she/her
Chantel is a black lesbian woman from Botswana and considers herself an African feminist theologian, and has a strong passion for theology as a discipline and a practical way of life. Her interest are especially its interaction with spirituality and sexuality. Chantel has a BA degree in theology and her work focuses on faith, and inclusion and their link to human rights. She has a long history of LGBTI activism and an aspiring minister of the word and works of Christ in the African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Mtzw Mtzw
Mtzw MtzwPart time facilitator for the Hearts Set on Pilgrimage Retreat

Based in Johannesburg
Pronouns: He/zee
Mtzw Mtzw is a black queer theologian who lives in Johannesburg and is a child of Africa. Mtzw is a lover of people and the ways we can all make our world a beautiful place to live in. He has a Masters degree in Theology, and a passion to do theology that is contextual and owned by the people who create those theologies . Mtzw is a writter, speaker and organic intellectual at the intersections of gender, sexuality, decoloniality and sex.

GIN Global Amabassadors

Rev Nokuthula Dhladhla
Rev Nokuthula DhladhlaInaugural GIN Global Ambassador

Rev Nokuthula Dhladhla is a Pastor of House of Prayer and Worship (HPW) which started in 2015 in Soweto. Previously she was a Senior Pastor of Hope and Unity MCC (HUMCC) since 1998-2010. She was ordained in 1998 officially as a Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC) pastor until 2010. Rev Nokuthula is also a part of Deo Gloria Apostolic Network of churches which is based in Durban. She is the member of Global Interfaith Network (GIN), a member of Circle of Concern African Theologians Women, a Board member of Micah project, a committee member of Association of Christian Religion Practitioner, she is also a Vice -Chairperson Dialogue for change. She is currently working as Project Officer for SANERELA+ part-time and a Founding member of the new association which is called Ashes to Purpose. She previously worked for Ecumenical Service for Socio Economic Transformation as a project officer.
The life and experiences of Rev Nokuthula has been documented in several book chapters, and documentaries (Miriam Dancing by Elise van Wyk, to have and to hold by Melanie Judge, Faces and Phases by Zanele Moholi and different magazines (bona 2015). DVD and also at an exhibition “Journeys of Faith – Navigating Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity” held at the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg.
She has a Diploma in Theology and a 3 days short course – Urban ministry – Pretoria University 2008. Other trainings: SAVE training tool on HIV, gender and sexuality by INERELA, training and resource development- created in the image of God by IAM, One Body material – on human sexuality, the inclusive church and image of Godin the face of HIV and AIDS by Nordic – FOCCISA. She is recently been asked by Soulforce to be the Advisory Team member in creating Gender Justice theological resources.
In the years since then, Nokuthula has participated in a very wide range of work in the field of religious dialogue especially – convening and participating in many meetings with religious leaders, working towards establishing greater understanding and tolerance for LGBTIQ people in the faith sector. Among others, she has made a very important contribution to a process convened jointly by the Church of Norway and the Fellowship of Christian Councils of Southern Africa (FOCCISA) to begin a process of dialogue and training material with the councils and their members towards creating greater understanding and tolerance for LGBTIQ people in Southern Africa. She has also been involved in designing the training curriculum for LGBTI people of Faith engaging in as Dialogue partners. She was recently ask to speak on a side event, CSW63 in UN Preventing gender base violence: the role of the religious leaders. Her focus was on LBTI.
She facilitated workshops around rural areas for LGBTI integrating sexuality and spirituality for the Micah Project; and in convening a dialogue process for the House of Rainbow, a UK based network of LGBTIQ friendly churches. She is also one of the founder members of Dialogues for Change, a recently established organization aiming to convene dialogues with South African religious leaders around greater understanding and tolerance for LGBTIQ people. She runs a healing space for young Lesbian women and gender non conforming woman. That aims to help in healing the internal wounds that have prevented then in finding their purpose.
Nokuthula is an exceptional human being – she is grounded and compassionate, and from her life experience, able to articulate exactly why LGBTIQ people must be valued and recognized as full human beings, especially in faith-based contexts. She has a great deal of experience of dealing with difficult contexts and is able to stand her ground. She is a powerful, funny, deeply human speaker. Nokuthula is a person of great passion, someone who is committed to making a different world possible and someone with immense dedication to activism. She is well known within the LGBTI sector and beyond. She has volunteered her time extensively to facilitate workshops and sensitization trainings in several provinces. She has done this in collaboration with numerous NPO’s.
Most recently she has also participated in a side event convened by the UN Interagency Task Force on Religion at CSW2019 around the role of religious leaders in preventing gender based violence (March 2019), as well as at a side event convened by GIN at the Human Rights Council in Geneva on religious institutions around the world affirming LGBT people (July 2019).

Volunteers

Volunteer Translators:

Arabic – Maha Jouini
French – Michael Cousin
Russian – Tatjana Lehatkova

We are still looking for Spanish, Chinese and Swahili translators. If you wish to volunteer, please contact us on info@gin-ssogie.org

Thank you very much to all our volunteers!!

Governance Board members

Ymania Brown
Ymania BrownBoard Co-Chair, Treasurer, Chair of Finance Sub-committee, Representative for the Pacific

Based in Australia
Faith traditions: Jewish, Catholic, Buddhist, Samoan indigenous
Pronouns: She, hers
Bio: 10 years of experience in NGO’s, Ymania is now part of Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice (New York, International Advisory Board Member), ILGA (Geneva, Board Member, Treasurer, Alternate Co-Secretary General), the International Gay Lesbian Trans Bisexual and Intersex Association, the Samoa Fa’afafine Association (Samoa, Technical Advisor) and of course, GIN-SSOGIE (Johannesburg, Board member, Treasurer and Co-Chair). Ymania is Samoan by birth, and has Germanic, Scottish, Jewish and Samoan bloodlines. She was born and baptized Catholic, whilst also learning Jewish and Buddhist teachings when growing up.

    Judith Kotze
    Judith KotzeBoard Co-Chair, Chair of HR Sub-committee

    Based in South Africa
    Faith tradition: Christian
    Pronouns: She, hers
    Rev Judith Kotzé qualified as one of the first Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) female ministers at Stellenbosch University (US) in 1995. She served the DRC from 1996 to 1999 in a multi-disciplinary ministry regarding sex work. Judith completed a Master’s degree in Missiology at the US in 2001, working on Interreligious Dialogue as a model for the Intra-faith Dialogue around sexual orientation.
    Judith did part-time research for Inclusive and Affirming Ministries (IAM) in 1996 and 1997, then joined the IAM Board until she was employed part-time at IAM in 2000. In 2008 she was appointed full-time as Senior Programme Manager and from 2011 to 2016 served as Director of IAM. In 2017 she was part-time Global Collaboration Manager for IAM, with special focus on the collaboration with the Global Interfaith Network and the World Council of Churches. IAM has been a founding member of the Global Interfaith Network for people of all sexes, sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions (GIN) during her term as director and since June 2017, Judith serves as co-chair of the GIN Board. She also serves on the Reference Group on Human Sexuality (RGHS) of the World Council of Churches (WCC) since August 2014.
    Judith is passionate about theology and especially interested in the field of sexuality as it intersects with spirituality in the life journeys of people of faith, with special interest in the faith journeys of sexual minorities within their faith contexts in Africa. She is currently self-employed as Independent consultant / Facilitator / Spiritual guide. She developed her skills in facilitation through the More to Life (MtL) training program underpinned by the Kairos foundation. She became the first MtL senior trainer for South Africa in 2002 and facilitated trainings in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg until 2012. She has been a Kairos sponsor ever since her introduction to the program in June 1996.

      Rowland Jide Macaulay
      Rowland Jide MacaulayRepresentative for Sub-Saharan Africa

      Based in the United Kingdom
      Faith tradition: Christian
      Pronouns: He, his
      Bio: Jide is the founding Pastor and CEO of House of Rainbow CIC. British-Nigerian born in London, a Christian minister since 1998, a dynamic and an inspirational speaker, author, poet, pastor and preacher, HIV+ activist, holds a degree in Law, masters’ degree in Theology and Post-graduate certificate in Pastoral Theology. Jide focuses his ministry on inclusion and reconciliation of sexuality, spirituality and human rights. He writes for various Christian and secular Journals. He has authored several books, Poetry Inspired 2001 and Pocket Devotion for LGBT Christians 2005, he has won several awards including the 2003 and 2007 Black LGBT Community Award for "Man of the Year" for his work helping people of faith. Shortlisted for the National Diversity Awards 2014, in the category for Positive Role Model. He served from 2007 to 2013 as Executive Board member and Co-Chair of Pan Africa International Lesbians and Gay Association. He is currently Regional Africa Representative of the Global Interfaith Network, Board of Trustee at Kaleidoscope Trust UK, and a Trained Volunteer Champion at Africa Children's Charity.

        Jacq Carver
        Jacq CarverBoard Secretary, Representative for Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand

        Based in The Netherlands
        Faith tradition: Jewish
        Pronouns: they, them, theirs.
        I have been a queer rights activist since I came out in the late 1970’s and have participated in numerous protest and equal rights movements in the US, the UK and Europe, including Act Up in New York, anti- Clause 28 protests in London and Amsterdam, and same-sex marriage protests in the Netherlands.
        I believe passionately in equal rights for people all sexes, genders, gender identities, and expressions and have, in one way or another, worked toward achieving equality and acceptance for several decades. I also believe that creating and maintaining Jewish spaces that welcome and embrace LGBTIQ+ people is tikkun olam - repairing the world; It is not enough to be a passive consumer of equal rights won by others but we all must do what we can to ensure that all people enjoy equality.
        While marriage equality has been written into law in many countries, the changes have not yet brought about a concomitant change in peoples’ attitudes towards sexual and gender minorities: we can laud tolerance all we want but tolerance is wafer-thin and laws can always be repealed. We have to do more to ensure that the (sometimes grudging) acceptance of LGBTIQ+ people is not as fleeting as the life of a mayfly; continued action, education and effort is necessary in order to change ideas and attitudes. Just as every generation must find out the Torah for themselves, so every generation must work to preserve our hard-won rights.

          Sanjay Sharma
          Sanjay SharmaRepresentative for South and Central Asia

          Based in Nepal
          Faith tradition: Hindu
          Pronouns: He, his
          Bio: Sanjay Sharma is an LGBT rights activist from of Nepal. He has been involving in Nepal’s LGBT rights movement since 2003 through different projects on HIV/AIDS, human rights activism, constitutional campaigns, advocacy, capacity building, academic research, and others from grass root level. Sanjay is currently the Assistant Program Director of Blue Diamond Society (BDS), Nepal’s leading LGBT rights organization. BDS is one of Nepal’s largest non-governmental organizations with over 750 full-time staff, 53 offices, and an annual budget exceeding $1 million. Sanjay is also the founder vice president of the board of the Federation of Sexual and Gender Minorities Nepal, which is the network of all LGBTI rights organizations. Regionally He is Task force member of The South Asian Human Rights Association of Marginalised Sexualities and Genders (SAHRA) also Board Member of Global Interfaith Network representing South and Central Asia. His contributions to the LGBT movement in Nepal On 21 December 2007, the Supreme Court of Nepal issued a landmark verdict directing the government to enact laws enabling equal rights to LGBT citizens. Sanjay was involved in court pleadings on this case on behalf of LGBT people before the Supreme Court. He is working closely with interfaith network of Nepal on SOGI issues. He attend regional faith leaders dialogue at Bangladesh also involve in panel discussion. He was a member of the Country Coordination Mechanism of the Global Fund (CCM).. On 21 December 2007, the Supreme Court of Nepalissued a landmark verdict directing the government to enact laws enabling equal rights to LGBT citizens. Sanjay was involved in court pleadings on this case on behalf of LGBT people before the Supreme Court.

            Human Rights Defender
            Human Rights DefenderRepresentative for Latin America

            Our Latin American Board member is a human rights defender and finds themselves currently in a compromised situation in terms of security. For this reason we have removed their name and details from the website.

              Sharon Cox
              Sharon CoxAdditional South African Board member

              Based in South Africa
              Faith tradition: Christian
              Pronouns: She, hers
              Rev Sharon Cox has been in the human rights sector for over 20 years. Sharon has been with Triangle Project, the oldest LGBTI human rights organisation in Africa, for the past 10 years as their Health and Support Services Manager. Sharon has a passion for what she does and is actively involved in the monitoring of hate crimes in the Western Cape and providing court preparation, support and counselling to survivors and families. Micah Project, a small Non-Profit organisation is also close to Sharon’s heart. Micah comprises a group of more radical activists who believe in justice, kindness and being humble whilst being unafraid to speak out. Micah also assists in direct and concrete ways in which other human rights organisations are not able to because of funding constrictions. Sharon was formerly the African Development staff member with Metropolitan Community Churches. She values interfaith work and regularly contributes to joint platforms between faiths. Sharon was a respondent in the case for marriage equality in South Africa, which was realised in 2006. Sharon holds a post graduate degree with majors in Criminology and Psychology and studied Theology through the Pacific School of Religion in Berkley California

                Kakay Pamaran
                Kakay PamaranRepresentative for East & South-East Asia

                Based in the Philippines
                Faith tradition: Christian
                Pronouns: She, hers

                Rev Kakay Pamaran is a pastor, ecumenist, peace activist, gender justice advocate, and Bible teacher. She currently serves as Coordinator of Union Theological Seminary's Field Education Office in Dasmarinas in the Philippines. She is also adjunct professor in Scripture and Interpretation. She has a degree in Psychology from Silliman University and a Master of Divinity from UTS. She is completing her course work for her Master of Theology in New Testament and Historical Jesus Research, and convenes the Center for Gender and Sexuality of the Union Theological Seminary.

                  Phumzile Mabizela
                  Phumzile MabizelaAdditional South African Board member

                  Based in Johannesburg
                  Faith tradition: Christian
                  Pronouns: She, hers
                  The Rev Phumzile Mabizela is the Executive Director of Inerela+, the International Network of Religious Leaders Living With or Personally Affected by HIV/AIDS.

                    Ian McKnightRepresentative for the Caribbean

                    Based in Jamaica
                    Faith tradition: Christian
                    Pronouns: He, his