Yesterday, 27th of July 2023, OII Europe received the 2023 Alan Turing LGBTIQ+ Award for International Organisations, in Santa Cruz, Tenerife. The Alan Turing LGBTIQ+ Award is a unique award in the world in its category and aim to recognize the work of national and international personalities as well as organisations and bodies who have contributed to the fight for equality and visibility of the LGTBIQ+ community.
In his thank you speech OII Europe’s Executive Director and Co-Founder, Dan Christian Ghattas dedicated the award on behalf of the organization “to the European and Global Intersex Community and to all intersex individuals around the globe”.
[Please read the full speech below.]
“We are very excited to receive the Alan Turing LGBTIQ+ Award”, says Magda Rakita, Co-Chair of OII Europe. “We consider the prize not only a recognition of OII Europe’s and its member organisations’ relentless work in the past 11 years, but also as a strong sign of how much the world has changed since then.”
“Making the existence of intersex people visible was and is one of the key activities of OII Europe”, adds Kristian Randjelovic, Co-Chair and Co-Founder of OII Europe. “Receiving the Alan Turing LGBTIQ+ Award is a wonderful sign that visibility is growing”.
#AlanTuringLGBTIQ+Award #OIIEurope Thank You Speech –
#DanChristianGhattas, Executive Director and Co-Founder
THANK YOU SPEECH by Dan Christian Ghattas, Executive Director and Co-Founder of OII Europe
Thank you! Thank you so much!! Last year we celebrated 7th anniversary of OII Europe as a registered NGO but also the 10th anniversary of OII Europe the network. When we founded OII Europe in 2012 none of us could have imagined that only 11 years later we would be awarded the Alan Touring LGBTIQ Award also established in 2012.
But if I should say what laid the seeds for OII Europe I could even go back to the 90ties. I will not do this now, but let me just say that the early 2000nds were a turning point: a few handful of intersex persons connected globally via the early internet. And this created space to be accepted and among peers. And the space to spread and further develop an idea: that intersex rights are human rights!
Fast forward to 2012: Back then the founding organisations had already worked on a European level for three years and this meant most often: to introduce surprised and often very reluctant policy makers and politicians to the fact that intersex people exist and that severest human rights violations were happening unnoticed on their doorstep and in the sacrosanct medical environment.
OII Europe was founded to consolidate this work, to go forward, step by step, as long as it would take, to make our vision reality: to end intersex genital mutilation and societal discrimination and to empower other intersex persons and help them understand that they a wonderful part of human diversity.
Today OII Europe has already 25 intersex-led and 6 supporting member organisations in 22 European Countries. And here is the thing: OII Europe could never have survived and grown without the strength and resilience of those intersex persons and their families who decided to join the fight because they developed the same vision, who we support and who support us, who, against all odds and challenges established their own projects and organisations in those 22 countries and who do amazing activism often still as volunteers or underpaid.
And on a personal level as intersex human rights defenders we would not have been able to survive without being part of this wonderful global intersex community. Albeit still very much invisiblised and silenced, in reality, we are many.
Therefore, I would like to dedicate this award on behalf of OII Europe to the European and Global Intersex Community and to all intersex individuals around the globe. Intersex Rights are Human Rights. Thank you for acknowledging this.