The Social Cooperative Enterprise Emantes was founded in July 2018 by active members of the “Lgbtqia+ Refugees Welcome” collective in collaboration with migration and refugee experts. The collective was created in September 2016 by refugees and solidary persons. Most members had personal experience with refugee-migration issues and/or were involved in queer, lgbt+ and feminist activist groups, and came together to focus their attention on one of the most unseen facets of the refugee “crisis”: that of the lgbt+ community.
Following a year of action, the members of the collective concluded that the lack of legal form limited its potential. That is, the collective could not access hot spots, camps, detention centres, asylum services, public services or other agencies. Furthermore, funding resources were limited, thus making the coverage of the refugees’ basic needs (food, housing, education etc.) difficult or even impossible.
It was necessary to create something new. Emantes aims to overcome these barriers. Its main objectives are to further support the lgbt+ community and to raise awareness of their struggles. The creation of this legal entity will facilitate fundraising, visibility, and collaboration efforts.