The United States Embassy in Maseru, in honour of the pride of June, celebrated the LGBTQ+ community and supported to contribute their efforts in serving the life of people besides their sexual orientation and gender identity and also highlighted a remarkable advocate for HIV, human rights and 2014 Mandela Washington Fellow Tampose Mothopeng.
As per the United States Embassy update, Tampose Mothopeng is a remarkable advocate for HIV and human rights and a 2014 Mandela Washington Fellow. Tampose has dedicated himself to supporting the LGBTQI+ community and has been an active volunteer at The People’s Matrix Association since 2009, where he serves as the Executive Director.
Tampose’s pioneering research focuses on HIV, human rights, the legal framework surrounding the LGBTQI+ community, and the experiences of MSM and women who have sex with women (WSW) in sub-Saharan Africa and Lesotho. His commitment to HIV education shines through his work ethic and the enrolment of WSW participants in his studies.
Collaborating with esteemed researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Harvard University, and the University of Cape Town, Tampose has published numerous research documents and peer-reviewed journal articles. His work highlights the unique vulnerabilities MSM and WSW individuals face in Lesotho and has been presented at various International AIDS Conferences through abstract submissions.
Furthermore, Tampose has significantly raised the profile of his organisation on international platforms. His participation in developing the groundbreaking global paper, “The Lancet on Trans* Health | Principle 17,” allowed him to effectively share the experiences of the transgender community in Lesotho at International AIDS conferences and ICASA meetings. As the first transgender individual to receive official recognition and appreciation from the PEPFAR Team in Lesotho, he has demonstrated his unwavering commitment and dedication to promoting the rights and interests of marginalised groups in the context of the HIV/AIDS response in Lesotho.
On a national level, Tampose Mothopeng has received the esteemed “Most Gender Focused Leader” award from Finate (BAM GROUP) for his outstanding advocacy work. He has courageously broken the silence surrounding the visibility and inclusion of gender diversity minorities in national programs, ensuring their voices are heard.
In the face of cultural and religious challenges that have silenced the LGBTIQ+ community in the name of Christianity, Tampose continues to hold the government of Lesotho accountable for its obligations. He has taken a leadership role by presenting the Human Rights Defender’s statement during the 53rd Human Rights Council session.
He has also challenged the national funding mechanism to benefit minority groups and advocated for changes in the legal framework. Tampose’s efforts have drawn the attention of lawmakers and law implementers, focusing on issues such as legal gender recognition and the protection of rights for the LGBTIQ+ community.
As a proud member of the LGBTIQ+ community, Tampose Mothopeng actively serves his community through his acquired skills in leadership, community organising, movement building, facilitation of dialogue discussions with community leaders, Level 1 counselling, and human rights activism. His exceptional dedication and contributions have significantly impacted promoting inclusivity, visibility, and the rights of marginalised individuals within the LGBTQI+ community in Lesotho.