Human rights in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity are a pressing issue across the Commonwealth. Due to the colonial legacy of homophobia, anti-LGBT legislation and discrimination of the LGBT+ community is significantly over-represented in this group of nations; 63% of Commonwealth countries criminalise homosexual activity compared to 35% globally.
To mark The Gambia’s re-entry to the Commonwealth in February 2018, a Time Limited Programme of awards was launched to support eight additional Scholarships for students from The Gambia; seven Master’s degrees and one PhD.
In 2018 the UK hosted the first ever Global Disability Summit. At this summit, the CSC pledged £300,000 to support outreach activities and to encourage more applications from people with disabilities and for subjects related to the rights of people with disabilities.
In 2020-21 the focus of our Time Limited Programme was on Girls’ Education. This was in support of the UK government’s ambitious initiative to get 40 million more girls in low-and middle-income countries into primary and secondary school in developing countries by 2026 and improve learning levels, so girls can achieve their full potential. This programme directly supported UN Sustainable Development Goal 4 and aligned with our own objectives to ensure gender parity in education.
In response to the UK government’s call to action at last year’s COP26 in Glasgow, the CSC’s Time Limited Programme (TLP) for 2022-2023 is focused on Clean Energy, Air and Oceans.