24May2024

SCM Medical Missions

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3806 Whitman Ave N
Seattle WA 98103

+1 206-545-7307

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Tag: LGBTQ

LGBTQ flag
Humanitarian AidLGBTQRefugees

Helping Vulnerable Refugee Minorities

LGBTQI people are an extremely vulnerable refugee minority. They face inequality; violence, torture, rape and execution—because of who they are; how they look and who they love.

What other refugee group faces honor killings by their own families?

What other refugee group is harassed, beaten, raped and sometimes murdered by their own fellow inmates and countrymen in a refugee camp?

The trauma refugees experience before, during and after fleeing their home countries is hard to comprehend for those of us who have always lived in relative safety.

In about 70 countries same-sex relations are criminalized. LGBTQI people are imprisoned. Many do not arrest or prosecute the murderers of LGBTQI people…..especially if the murders are carried out by family members protecting the “honor” of the family. They often turn a blind eye to religious extremists and militias who hunt and murder in the name of “God.” In six countries it is punishable by death. Sometimes public executions happen.

I am eternally grateful to SCM Medical Missions and Rita Zawaideh for partnering with me in helping so many! Since 2010 I have learned a lot from Rita and her vast network of international contacts. We have worked closely together in helping many refugees find places to hide when their lives have been threatened as well as getting them survival money, advice, and emotional support while in active migration. We work closely together to help these people through the ups and downs of the many years it takes to resettle them in a more welcoming country. Once resettled, we help and guide them to build happy and successful new lives.

We prioritize helping LGBTQI, Female Gender and Human Rights Activists and their families who are actively being hunted by repressive regimes. We are helping many who are currently in hiding, in active migration or have been resettled. Many would not have survived without the hard and smart work of Rita and SCM. We hope once they are resettled, they will inspire the generation left behind and help the newest arrivals.

During the time I have been working closely with SCM, I have witnessed them getting medical and basic living and survival supplies and professionals to people living through the devastation of war, poverty, and natural disasters in many countries. SCM got medical and living supplies to people living near the front lines during the Syrian civil war and had people working in the refugee camps in Jordan and Greece. They ran an orphanage in a cave. Recently, they opened a medical/ dental clinic in Lebanon. They have been sending supplies to help to victims of the February 2023 Earthquake in Syria and Turkey.
Meanwhile, back in Seattle; SCM has been helping hundreds of refugees mostly from Syria and Afghanistan begin their new lives.

To the refugee community I helped resettle to Seattle… Rita is “Mom.” She has the biggest heart of anyone I know!

Thank you SCM and Rita!

Dr. Michael Failla
Seattle

LGBTQ Afghan Refugee Aid
AfghanistanLGBTQ

The Long Road to Safety for LGBTQ Afghans

SCM Medical Missions is assisting LGBTQ and Gender Activists get out of Afghanistan and to safety.

AfghanistanLGBTQRefugees

Help Save Vulnerable Afghan Minority Groups This Winter

Hazara minority in Aghanistan

With winter approaching, Afghanistan is soon to go into crisis. Over the next few months, vulnerable Afghans face extreme danger, not just from the hands of the Taliban, but from their collapsed economic system as well. Starvation is a real possibility. Minority groups such as the Hazara people and the LGBTQ community are discriminated against by the Taliban. They are unable to work – they have lost their jobs and are in hiding, and they face a terrible future. With no safe routes out of the country, and the international community mostly closed against them, help for such essential items as food, warmth and shelter has never been so needed.

We can help get direct food assistance to those who need it, ensuring vulnerable Afghans can have a roof over their heads this winter, food and warm clothing. 

Please donate here, every little helps and goes directly to fund Afghans in need.

The crisis isn’t over, but every penny can go a long way.

AfghanistanHumanitarian AidLGBTQ

‘I’m just trying to survive’

CNN has reported on the story of the two Afghan men SCM is helping to get to safety. Our friend and LGBTQ activist Michael Failla is leading this effort. You can read the full article here about escaping one city and then being in hiding in Kabul, and their escape to Pakistan where they are waiting to be approved to come to the US.

And please donate to help them with survival expenses and to help them get on their feet once they are in the US.

AfghanistanHuman RightsHumanitarian AidLGBTQRefugees

LGBTQ Afghans in Need

When the Taliban took over Afghanistan in August 2021, Ahmed and his younger brother Mahmoud had no choice but to run. They left their home with all their possessions, found a hiding spot in a tiny room with no toilet or bathroom and stayed there terrified for weeks while their government collapsed and their country changed completely.

Ahmed is gay, in a country where being LGBTQ is punishable by death from the Taliban  – who have avowed to continue this horrific practice. He received death threats and was actively being hunted.

Both brothers are also Hazara, an ethnic minority much persecuted in Central Asia. The brothers’ own father was killed in a massacre of Hazara males when they were small children. They converted to Christianity but being ex-Muslim and Christian puts them in danger from religious fundamentalists, who see renouncing their religion as blasphemy.

Thankfully, they have escaped to Pakistan but they are constantly under threat of being forcibly returned to Afghanistan like many refugees before them. 

We’re helping them apply for safety in the US but there’s a long way to go. If you’d like to sign their petition, click here! 

We are raising funds to help support the brothers while they await the outcome of their asylum claim. Both are talented and hardworking, with a huge variety of experience. We want to support them until they are able to reach safety and become part of and contribute to the community. Ahmed wants to become an LGBTQ advocate, helping people in his situation and Mahmoud wants to complete his studies at university.

Can you help these brothers? We need funds to help maintain them while they receive their asylum claim, and also to find their feet when they arrive in the US. Every little counts!

Please share with your friends and thank you!

Community EventsHuman RightsRefugees

Love Beyond Borders

Please note that this event has been cancelled. The Seattle Men’s Chorus hopes to reschedule the event in the future and we will keep you posted. You can still donate to our New Life Fund to continue to aid the LGBTQ refugees. Thank you for your support during these difficult times.


On March 20 and 21, the Seattle Men’s Chorus will be performing at Benaroya Hall with a program that is intended to spotlight Seattle as an epicenter of an “underground railway” to bring LGBTQ people from areas where they face persecution and threat of death for being LGBTQ. Members of the Chorus have made it their life’s mission to conduct this pathway to safety.

SCM Medical Missions is joining with the Seattle Men’s Chorus to help provide a safe route to refugees, who find themselves in camps or other countries where they are persecuted, attacked and threatened, to obtain asylum in Canada through Rainbow Refugee. You can read more about the Seattle Men’s Chorus and their program, and we hope you will consider attending the concert. SCM will have a table in the lobby providing more information about SCM and our efforts to help protect the most vulnerable refugee populations such as LGBTQ people. You can also donate to our NEW LIFE FUND to help these refugees find safety.