Pictogram Freedom-seeker


Pictogram Freedom-seeker

CHercheur.euse de liberté

Pictogram Homeless person


Pictogram Asylum seeker


Pictogram Asylum seeker

Demandeur.euse.s de protection internationale

Pictogram Refugee


Pictogram Refugee


Pictogram Professional


Pictogram Professional


Move to safety

LGBTQIA+ people living in unsafe LGBT+-phobic countries flee human rights violations, family, society and government persecutions, torture, and even execution because of their sexual orientation and gender identity. Depending on departure and destination, the journey can be completely different with various challenges.

To travel legally, travel documents - like a passport - are needed to cross the border besides a ticket. If a visa is not needed, leaving the country of origin is easier. For instance, Venezuelans do not need a visa to visit most European countries. However, everything becomes more complicated if there are visa requirements to travel. 

For LGBT+ people persecuted in their home country, a visa is the most challenging document needed to travel. Most LGBT+-phobic countries do not have a strong passport, which makes it difficult for LGBT+ individuals to leave. Sometimes, people are truly trapped with no way or means to escape. 

However, some strategies are recommended for leaving the country.

Legal immigration

  • Tourist or business visa: You may apply to receive a visa from the embassy of the country of destination in your home country by yourself or through a travel agency. You need to submit a lot of documents to succeed. Some companies organise business tours for commercial purposes. Depending on your field of profession you may apply for it as well. Pay attention to this fact, as due to Dublin regulation, as you must claim asylum in the country for which you have a visa. Otherwise, you may be returned to that country. 
  • Family visit visa: If you have a first-degree family (partner, children, mother, father, brother or sister in a safe country) you may apply for a family visit visa after you receive an official invitation letter from him/her. 
  • Family reunification visa: Only immediate family members (child, spouse, or sometimes parents for minor applicants (usually under 18 years old, unmarried)) are eligible to petition under the reunification program. The rules in various countries are different.
  • Humanitarian visa: Humanitarian visas are granted by some countries in order to fulfil their international obligation to protect refugees from persecution. The criteria in the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees are often used in assessing whether there is a legitimate claim for protection.
    It defines a refugee as a person who:
  • is outside their country of origin or legal residence
  • is unable, or unwilling to return to their country of legal residence because of a legitimate fear of persecution regarding their race, religion, nationality, group membership, or a political belief, as defined by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • has not been convicted of a serious crime by a fair tribunal.

Australia, European Union countries, Russia, Argentina, Brazil and the United States are the main countries which are offering humanitarian visas.

  • Scholarship: A scholarship is an award of financial aid for a student to further their education at a private elementary or secondary school, or a private or public post-secondary college, university, or other academic institution. Scholarships are awarded based upon various criteria, such as academic merit, diversity and inclusion, athletic skill, financial need, or some combination of these criteria. Try using search engines, universities, or some specific websites such as to find a position. If you have bachelor or master diploma, you may apply for master or PhD programs.
  • International internship programs: International internship program is a short-term (one month to one year) work experience with an organization abroad that allows participants to apply theoretical classroom knowledge in a real-world setting and gain a better understanding of a given field. Try to contact related organisations, company, research group or institute offering these programs.
  • HRDs (human Right Defenders) support programs: Human rights defenders are individuals, groups and organs of society that promote and protect universally recognised human rights and fundamental freedoms. Human rights defenders seek to promote and protect civil and political rights as well as to promote, protect and bring about economic, social and cultural rights. Human rights defenders also promote and protect the rights of members of groups such as indigenous communities. The definition does not include those individuals or groups who ‘commit or propagate violence'. For more information, refer to following link:

Illegal emigration

Illegal emigration is not recommended. It has its own dangers and challenges. You need to cross borders with fake or without travel documents by aeroplane, ship or vehicle or on foot. Be careful that human traffickers may not be accountable.

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