Monthly Donation Plan

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What is MDP?

MDP is an IRQR initiative that aims to provide aid and care for the most vulnerable and ‘at risk’ Iranian queer asylum seekers who have fled Iran to save themselves from possible torture, arrest, prosecution and death.

This initiative aims to create a community of friends and supporters who would be willing to provide a monthly donation to help support queer Iranian asylum seekers during part or all of their stay in transit countries before they are assigned to and settled in safe countries.


IRQR is a financially independent organization that receives no governmental support and is staffed and operated by volunteers. It relies solely on donations from individuals and human rights organizations in order to offer its services and programs. IRQR also to provides crisis support, counseling and resources for Iranian queers living in Iran and other transit countries. We also send affidavits and letters of support to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and European governments on behalf of Iranian queer asylum seekers.


Why do Iranian queers flee their country?

Very few people leave their country, family and friends voluntarily, but for Iranian queer asylum seekers, the need to quickly flee Iran. If they do not flee Iran they will be persecuted by their own community. The Islamic Penal Code states that “Sodomy” or lavat—consummated sexual activity between males, whether penetrative or not—is punishable by execution, regardless of whether the partner is passive or active. Non-penetrative sexual activity can bring up to 100 lashes


What are the conditions of Iranian queer asylum seekers?

Most of the Iranian queer asylum seekers that IRQR supports are like many of the world’s refugees that escape to a transit country. They must wait for extended periods of time for a refugee status before re-settling into a supportive country. These asylum seekers have no source of income, no parental support, no work rights and no access to health resources or medication. They often live in crowded houses in countries such as Turkey, Malaysia, Indonesia, India and Europe.

Their houses often have no heating or sanitary facilities. Most asylum seekers are young and highly educated individuals who have fled Iran due to threatened or ongoing violence and a fear of persecution for their sexual orientation.

They are often traumatized, tired, feeling destitute and in need of support like food, medical care, counseling and legal advice.


How can you help Iranian queer asylum seekers?

Asylum seekers often require assistance in order to pay for the basic necessities of life including food and shelter. The refugee process is a long and arduous one that also requires taxes and fees to be paid to the UNHCR to process applications. Funds and support are provided to refugees on a per-need basis. With your MDP membership, we will provide these basic necessities to a refugee in need. Please help our asylum seekers in bringing them to a country where they feel safe and valued.

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These are comments from those that IRQR have helped:
“I don’t have work permit. I have tried to work illegally in restaurants and other places, but I am not often given a job! In the rare case that I find a temporary job, I have to risk facing verbal, emotional and even sexual abuse.”
“Our power was cut off because we were not able to pay the bills. One of the tenants in the building told us that we could cook in his place if we were willing to offer him our “services”. This is the image they have got of gays!”
“All I usually eat is vegetables because it is cheap and filling. One of my toe nails fell off a while ago because of serious calcium deficiency.”
“We try to sleep as much as possible during the day so that we don’t feel our time so much. Sometimes we are awake only for 5 or 6 hours and then try to fall back sleep.”
“Our rooms do not usually have a heating system. It is expensive to buy coal to keep a heater running and we do not have warm running water. Turkish winters are very cold and we just try to warm ourselves with blankets.”
“Most of my friends here have college education if not university education. But we are young so we do not have huge financial savings. Most of our parents have stopped supporting us because they have found out we are queer. We fled the country because the moral police were after us and so there was no time for financial planning.”
“I have diabetes but cannot pay for my medication and the UNHCR does not help me.”
“My roommates and I got very sick last winter. We all had very high fevers. Our friend who used to be a medical student gave us some expired medicine and injections with used syringes.”
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