On 30th July 2019, five years since Naz passed away, BBC World Service broadcast globally a short film about our journey and how religious homophobia played a part in losing our Naz.
The piece came about after new research found that nearly half of young LGBT+ people who are left homeless after coming out are from religious backgrounds.
The research conducted by the Albert Kennedy Trust (AKT), which supports young people who are at risk of homelessness. The charity says three in four LGBT+ people are rejected by their families – and 45% of that number are from a faith background. The Trust says the majority are from Muslim and Christian families.
Strict interpretations of religious texts, from the Bible to the Quran, have been used to argue that being gay is a sin. However within every faith and religion there are more liberal, less homophobic interpretations that are accepting towards individuals who are born gay. Sadly the negative anti-LGBT voices often drown out the positive ones
The film was broadcast on BBC World News on 30th July 2019, on the same day that Naz passed away in 2014.
Matt set up the Naz and Matt Foundation in memory of his soulmate and fiancé, Naz, who passed away two days after being confronted about his sexuality by his religious parents. It was the first time that they knew their son was gay, in a relationship with Matt for 13 years and that they were planning to get married.