Illegal To Be Me

A project by: Illegal To Be Me Documentary


WE RAISED £1,826

from 11 donors

This project received pledges on Mon 11 Mar 2019
A documentary about a trans-identified male in Ghana - where LGBT rights are heavily suppressed.

Illegal to be me

“Be yourself”, people say. Is that a scary concept? Will people judge you? Will they shame you? Will they even care?

"Being yourself" is a difficult task for many but for some people, one thing is different: You are not only potentially judged and shamed just for"being yourself", you are breaking the law.

In over 30 countries across the globe same-sex partnership is against the law, meaning millions of people live in countries where it is illegal to be themselves.

about our documentary

Illegal to be me is a documentary that will take viewers to Accra, Ghana to see life through the eyes of A.D, a trans-identified male living in a country where it is against the law to be himself.

A.D has a 3-year-old son with his partner A.J. Unfortunately, they have to live in secrecy for fear of being abused by members of the general public. A.D has been through a lot: he has been shamed by his family and friends and regularly verbally abused by others. 

help A.D be heard

All A.D wants is to have his story heard, so others like him can be helped and know that they are not alone. Being a part of the LGBTQ community should not be something you are shamed and looked down upon for. Our sexual orientation does not define us, we are all human and we all deserve the same rights.

This is an opportunity to allow viewers to get an inkling of what it is like to be homosexual or transgender in a country where your life choices are continually under a microscope, you have to hide who you are, or suffer abuse simply for being yourself.

With your support and help to bring our documentary to life, we can give A.D a platform to have his voice heard.

the crew

  • Yaa Kankam is the brains behind the entire project and is our Director and Producer. Yaa says: “I chose this topic because I believe it’s a story that needs to be told. It’s a taboo in many cultures to discuss homosexuality and being transgender."
  • Athena Gilbert-Wilson is our Researcher. Athena says: "When I first heard about the documentary I was eager to learn more about the discrimination."
  • Nelma Quaresma is our Sound Engineer. Nelma says: "I strongly believe this documentary can make a huge impact on Ghana and the rest of the world." 
  • Wahid Ali is our Editor. Wahid says: "I believe not being able to be yourself due to the laws in your country is not okay, with the privilege we have in our country."
  • Lee Slater is our Production Manager. Lee says: "As a gay man I am thrilled to be working on a project that I've connected to my whole life but which still allows me to learn."


We are kindly asking for donations to make this documentary possible. Making documentaries involves some financial investment and as students, we cannot afford to fund this documentary on our own. Any help you can provide is greatly appreciated!

In order to make our documentary, we are hoping to raise £2,600. This will go towards:

  • Flights (London-Accra) - £750: This will cover the cost of flights for two crew members (Director and Sound Operator).
  • Filming equipment - £600: We will be renting equipment in Ghana due to luggage space.
  • Camera Operator- £200: We will be hiring an external camera operator, we are hiring an external camera operator to save money on flight tickets.
  • Accommodation and food - £450: This is the estimated cost of accommodation and food for the fortnight our two crew members will be out in Ghana.
  • Transportation costs - £300. These costs include airport transfers for our crew and transportation of both crew and equipment to and from film locations in Ghana. 
  • Contingency fund - £300: When travelling abroad there can be unforeseen expenses, so we have included a healthy contingency fund. Any money left over will be used towards entry into film festivals. 

Your rewards

  • Check out the right hand side of our page for more detail on the rewards we will be offering. Included in these are souvenirs from Ghana, the chance to win a jam-packed hamper from Ghana, and a copy of our documentary.

 where can find you us ?

spread the word!

  • If you can’t donate personally, you can still help us by spreading the word about our project to your own network of contacts.
  • Please share this project with anyone you think would support us – on Twitter, Facebook, by email, telephone, in person or on your blog. Your support really matters.
  • Of course if you are also able to make a small personal donation and sponsor our project, we would be very grateful.

Thank you!