07
May

AR Covid19 Emergency Fund

Grammo Suspect, a Kenyan LGBTQI rapper, activist and spoken word musician, is one of the first artists to receive an emergency grant from Artists at Risk (AR). The AR Covid-19 Emergency Fund was created to support artists at risk who face threats to their freedom or safety and are unable to reach a place of refuge during the coronavirus pandemic.

As an openly lesbian artist in Kenya, Grammo Suspect – Rainbow Ambassador Kenya has been the victim of death threats. She was offered a residency by Artists at Risk (AR) at AR-Safe Haven Helsinki to enable her to find refuge in Finland, but following the outbreak of coronavirus, Europe’s lockdown has made it impossible for her to secure a visa.

‘Artists like Grammo Suspect are facing a double crisis,’ says Marita Muukkonen, co-founding director of Artists at Risk. ‘She faces threats as an #LGBTQI artist for violating local norms and is unable to reach a place of safety during the pandemic. It’s essential that artists like Grammo Suspect are given all the support necessary to survive. That’s why we created the emergency fund as a priority.’

The Artists at Risk (AR) Covid-19 Emergency Fund for persecuted artists was launched in April. The new fund will cover the living costs of artists at risk and, where necessary, relocate artists to a place of safety within their own country or region.

Grammo Suspect has repeatedly faced attacks and threats that have forced her to leave her own home.

Watch Grammo Suspect talking about the AR residency and the impact of Covid 19: https://youtu.be/rLRnyWY8bGo

Please support artists at risk like Grammo Suspect with a donation: https://www.gofundme.com/f/artistsatrisk

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