Aneiry Simonnaeh Zapata was born in a small black-Garífuna community called “Sambo Creek” in Honduras. She is a transgender black woman, a primary education teacher, a feminist, and a human rights activist, and specifically LGBTQIA+ rights. She arrived in the United States in 2015, fleeing the systematic repressions of her country, which affected the black community to a greater extent. This prompted her to develop actions and resources for the LGBTQIA+ migrant community in the United States.
Aneiry began her human rights activism with protests, conferences, social platforms and in the courts, testifying in cases of human rights violations of LGBTQIA+ and Afro-descendant populations. This connected her with BLMP (Black LGBT+ Migrant Project), and QDEP (Queer Detainee Empowerment Project) where she has been working since 2018 as Leader of the Garífuna Sector. She was a panelist for “My body, my choice” at the Platform National Convention, an annual feminist event for dialogue and debate. In 2019, she was chosen as Queen of “Miss Central American LGBTQ+”, becoming the first transgender black woman to win the contest.
In September 2020, she was part of the #VogueHope campaign for Vogue Latin America. In the campaign, Aneiry shared her powerful life message: “Being a black transgender woman represents empowerment, strength and struggle, because every day we must wake up and go out into the world to fight in order to remain. We live in a society that constantly wants to erase us, that is why we assiduously have to find new ways to remain and to be. WE WILL NEVER LET US BE ERASED.”