What we do

Merhaba considers that its task is to :

  • defend the interests of the target group(s)
  • combat homophobia, islamophobia, racism and paternalism
  • stimulate cross-cultural reflection
  • reduce discrimination and stigmatisation with regard to gender and sexual orientation irrespective of whether this applies to heterosexual or homosexual persons.
  • counteract the sexist, heterosexist and heteronormative mechanisms which underlie homophobia
  • contribute to greater acceptance of LGBQTI persons with non-western roots in their own community/communities
  • contribute to greater acceptance of ethnocultural minorities in society
  • promote social participation
  • contribute to interculturalisation of the LGBTQI movement, the social assistance organizations and the service organisations, the emergency and social services, education and society
  • promote respect and tolerance of diversity
  • contribute to creating a community in which each can find - and be free to take - his/her place


Merhaba does this by:

Empowerment and Emancipation of LGBTQI ethno-cultural minorities

  • a low-threshold acceptance
  • counseling and referral: internal and/or to a network of trained partners, services, emergency service bodies, leisure activities,...
  • chat rooms and forums
  • MerhaBar chat café on the last Thursday of each month in the Regenbooghuis in Brussels
  • Parties : Arab Funky Party (Shaabi, rai,…), Souk del Mundo (world music), Girl’s Souk (Vrouwenfuifen)
  • Socio-cultural and educational activities
  • Information, awareness-raising
  • Interest promotion and representation 

Triggering reflection

  • Disseminating information about the target group to the general public
  • knowledge transfer with regard to the relationship between culture, sexuality and identity with gender and sexual orientation as focus.
  • development of training opportunities and related materials for social workers, assistants, teachers, LGBQTI- reception groups, socio-cultural organisations, women's organisations,...
  • educational activities and projects tailored to different groups in the community;
  • socio-cultural activities and projects to build bridges and bring different social groups closer together
  • awareness-raising, campaigns and social action
  • participation in public debates
  • dialogue and discussions with other organisations, services, authorities...
  • advice to workplace intermediaries
  • information to the press, students, researchers....
  • news watching and a newsletter
  • creation of networks for exchange, collaboration, referral and complementarity 


More? See our FAQ