“We are unique when it comes to the global full-service provision that we offer as a LGBTQI+ charity, specifically for LGBTQI+ people who are seeking safety from persecution and violence – on the ground, through evacuation and the assurance of post-travel assistance.”
Rainbow Railroad’s core programme is Emergency Travel Support and they also offer other forms of assistance. This includes working with partners on the ground, providing shelter and cash support to people who are at risk. As well as advocacy and responding in emergency and crisis situations both as an organization and in partnership with government.
Since 2017, requests for assistance have increased 800%. “Two of the most complicated current issues in the world are LGBTQI+ rights and the refugee crisis. Our work is at the direct cross-section of both of those issues,” Dane explains. He adds that there are currently more people forcibly displaced than at any other time in human history.
“It’s ambitious and it’s also subversive. We’re existing in a system that is inherently racist, biased and homophobic. The refugee and asylum system globally is all three of those things.
“So doing our work in that context is challenging, meaningful and vitally important. It’s bringing arguably one of the most vulnerable populations within the refugee crisis to the forefront of social conscience. That is a valuable, important, difficult, expensive and logistically complex thing to do. And it’s what we do every day.”