Category Archives: Behind The Scenes

Sustaining trans justice through art!

IMG_7577 - Version 2Just as we believe there is no one way to do trans justice, we also believe there is no one way to volunteer or donate!

Over the past few years artist and activist Roan Boucher has donated 50% of all proceeds from his Queers Demand prints to the Trans Justice Funding Project!

In addition to being a fabulous ongoing TJFP sustainer, Roan is also the designer of our logo.

Here’s more about Roan and why he supports TJFP and trans justice.

Name: Roan Boucher

What Pronoun(s) do you prefer: he/him/his

Where do you live: Dripping Springs, TX

How are you involved with the Trans Justice Funding Project?
I think a lot about funding and fundraising and general ways that money is shared and leveraged and used and talked about within movements, and I get excited about projects like TJFP that are committed to doing these things in smart accountable ways. I heard about TJFP when it was first getting off the ground and I was really excited about the vision, so when I made these posters about queer social justice it felt like a really good opportunity to support TJFP by donating some profits from the posters. So far they’ve raised over $1,800 for TJFP, and I’ve been able to donate consistently over time as orders come in, which is awesome. (Also I got to design TJFP’s logo!)

Why is trans justice work or funding trans justice work important to you?
The work that TJFP’s grantees do is so important, particularly because it is work that addresses a wide spectrum of the issues that impact trans people. So often it is only a few specific issues that are seen as “relevant” to trans people, but really trans people and communities are affected in particular ways by all the systems that distribute resources and manage how people function in the world. Trans people so rarely get a voice in the systems that affect us, so it’s really important to support organizations that are led by trans folks and focus on the issues that we identify as most important in our lives. Plus, so many of the kinds of things that often make life hard for trans people – like not being able to get proper IDs, being profiled by police, having difficulty finding jobs and housing because of prejudice, having kids taken away – all these are things that make life hard for lots of targeted communities in different ways. I think that often, through doing trans justice organizing, the groups that TJFP funds are exposing these systems as violent and unfair across the board, and working to make changes that will benefit not only trans people but all people.

Do you have any hopes or wishes for TJFP for the next few years?
To keep gathering momentum and raising money and building connections between and awareness of organizations doing awesome work! So many of the groups TJFP funds are small, grassroots groups doing incredibly important work in their communities and not always getting a lot of attention or support outside their communities. TJFP fills a really important role not just of raising money but also building political analysis/awareness around trans justice and what it looks like on the ground. I want to see this work continue, and build momentum and support around forms of trans and queer organizing based in social justice rather than the mainstream marriage/military/capitalist assimilation kinds of goals that currently get tons of funding and attention!

If you see yourself as an ally to trans justice work, how do you see your role as an ally and/or do you have anything to say to other allies?
I think we all are hopefully allies to each other, right? I identify as trans, but various kinds of privilege buffer me from a lot of the forms of transphobia that TJFP’s grantees are working to end. I think being an ally means seeing all of our liberation as bound up together – that we can’t truly win justice for some trans people without winning justice for all trans people. That’s why I’m so excited by trans organizing that centers racial and economic justice, and organizes around justice for trans people in places like prisons, welfare systems, the immigration system – places that are sites of a lot of intersecting forms of violence. I think that the best way to build justice and safety for all trans people is to center the people who are facing the worst forms of transphobia and start there. photo (36)

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not volunteering at TJFP?
I work with my amazing and dreamy facilitation worker co-op, AORTA (Anti-Oppression Resource and Training Alliance). I parent a pretty amazing 11-month-old baby.  I recently moved home to Texas and am busy building home and family and community in the hill country outside of Austin. I work from a distance with POOR Magazine in the Bay Area, helping support them in building the Homefulness project, which is a housing and organizing and media-creating and community-building space by and for poor people. I make art. I do a lot of nerdy kitchen fermentation projects and generally like to cook things and grow things and do many projects of all sorts.
Thank you Roan for inspiring and moving us with your artwork and support.  We heart you!

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Announcing the 2015 TJFP Grantees!

tjfp group 2015

The 2015 TJFP grantmaking team and TJFP staff

It really happened!

Congratulations to everyone who applied and to this years grantees!

Even though we weren’t able to fund all of the incredible trans justice groups who applied, we’re ecstatic that we were able to distribute $200,000 amongst 87 groups!

Every year we continue to grow thanks to tremendous community support.   We are always amazed by you and always extremely grateful.

Please stay tuned to view all 2015 applicants who met our criteria. Whether groups received a grant or not, their work is equally important and will be added to our directory.  It’s about supporting AND mapping trans justice!

Finally, a very special thank you to our community grantmaking panel (and team) who read each and every application and put so much love into the entire grant making process.  Ruby, Trudie, M’Bwende, Mel, Colin, Marin, Nico, Andrea and Rebecca, you were one brilliant and hardworking crew.  What a pleasure it was to work with you.

And now, the grantees…

Arizona

$5000  Arcoíris Liberation Team, Phoenix, AZ

$2500  Arizona Queer and Undocumented Immigrant Project,  Phoenix, AZ

$5000  Mariposas Sin Fronteras (Butterflies Without Borders),  Tucson, AZ

$1000  Southern Arizona Gender Alliance, Tucson, AZ

 

Arkansas 

$2500  Arkansas Transgender Equality Coalition, Little Rock, AR

 

California 

$1000 Criminal Queers Film, San Francisco, CA

$5000  Gender Justice LA, Los Angeles, CA

$2500  Immigrant Youth Coalition, Los Angeles, CA

$2500  MAJOR! A New Documentary Film, San Francisco, CA

$1000  S.G. Reichen Trans Assistance Fund, San Diego, CA

$1000  San Francisco Transgender Film Festival, San Francisco, CA

$5000  T-FFED: Trans Folx Fighting Eating Disorders, Los Angeles, CA

$1000  Trans Lifeline, San Francisco, CA

$1000  Trans Student Educational Resources, Claremont, CA

$1000  Trans Worker Center, Long Beach, CA

$5000  Transgender, Gender Variant and Intersex Justice Project (TGIJP), San Francisco, CA

$1000  The Altar: Ki’tay Lives, Los Angeles, CA

 

Colorado 

$1000  Boulder Pride/Out Boulder, Boulder, CO

$1000  Colorado Springs Queer Collective, Parker, CO

 

Washington DC

$1000  OTHER (Organization for Transgender Health & Employment Resources), Washington, DC

 

Florida

$2500  Unity Coalition|Coalicion Unida, Miami Beach, FL

 

Georgia

$2500  JustUsATL, Atlanta, GA

$5000  LaGender Inc., East Point, GA

$2500  Trans(forming), East Point, GA

$1000  Unheard Voices, Roswell, GA

 

Illinois 

$1000  GenderNexus, Inc., Pendleton, IN

$2500  Invisible to Invincible API Pride of Chicago, Chicago, IL

$1000  RAD Remedy, Chicago, IL

$2500  Transformative Justice Law Project of Illinois, Chicago, IL

 

Kentucky 

$1000  TSTAR, Louisville, KY

 

Louisiana

$2500  New Legacy Ministries, New Orleans, LA

 

Maryland 

$5000  Sistas of the “t”, Baltimore, MD
$2500  Trans Women of Color Coalition, Baltimore, MD

 

Maine

$1000  Maine Transgender Network, Kennebunkport, ME

 

Minneapolis

$1000  20% Theatre Company Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN

 

Michigan 

$2500  Detroit REPRESENT!, Detroit, MI

$1000  Trans* Leadership Project, Okemos, MI

 

Missouri

$2500  Metro Trans Umbrella Group, St Louis, MO

$5000  The Sisterhood (Missouri GSA Network), St Louis, MO

Mississippi

$1000  Bois of the Sippi, Corinth, MS

 

Montana 

$2500  Gender Expansion Project, Missoula, MT

$5000  Montana Two Spirit Society, Missoula, MT

 

North Carolina

$5000  HendFact Henderson (Henderson Fuerza Activa), Henderson, NC

$1000  Transformers, Asheville, NC

$1000  Tranzmission, Asheville, NC

 

New Mexico

$5000  Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM

 

Nevada 

$2500  Gender Justice Nevada, Las Vegas, NV
$1000  Transgender Allies Group, Reno, NV

 

New York 

$2500  Black Trans Media, Brooklyn, NY

$1000  Community Kinship Life (CK Life), Bronx, NY

$5000  Translatina Network, Brooklyn, NY

$1000  Destination Tomorrow, Bronx, NY

$1000  New York City Trans Oral History Project, New York, NY

$1000  DOPE Collective/TRANSgressions, Buffalo, NY

$5000  Jay’s House, Brooklyn, NY

$5000  Lorena Borjas Community Fund, Jackson Heights, NY

$5000  Queer Detainee Empowerment Project, Brooklyn, NY

$2500  Star People Film, Brooklyn, NY

$1000  Third Root Education Exchange, Brooklyn, NY

$1000  Trans in Action, New York, NY

 

Ohio

$1000  Heartland Trans Wellness Group, Cincinnati, OH

$1000  Transgender American Veterans Association, Akron, OH

$1000  TransOhio, Inc., Columbus, OH

 

Oregon 

$1000  The Bridgewalkers Committee, Portland, OR

$1000  TransActive Gender Center, Portland, OR

$1000  Lower Columbia Gender Alliance, Astoria, OR

$1000  NW Trans and/or Women’s Action Camp (TWAC), Portland, OR

$5000  Trans Health PDX, Portland, OR

 

Pennsylvania 

$1000  Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center, Lehigh Valley, PA

$2500  Garden of Peace Project, Homestead, PA

 

Rhode Island 

$1000  TGI Network of Rhode Island, Providence, RI

 

South Carolina 

$2500  We Are Family’s Trans* Love Fund, Charleston, SC

 

Tennessee 

$5000  Tennessee Trans Journey Project, Nashville, TN

 

Texas 

$5000  Trans Pride Initiative, Dallas, TX

$1000  Transgender Education Network of Texas, College Station, TX

$2500  allgo, Austin, TX

$2500  Black Transmen Inc, Dallas, TX

$5000  Cicada Collective, Lewisville, TX

$1000  Gender Infinity, Houston, TX

$1000  Name and Gender Marker Change Clinic – Houston, Houston, TX

 

Utah 

$1000  Outreach Resource Centers, Ogden, UT
$1000  Transgender Education Advocates (TEA) of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT
$2500  TransAction Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

 

Vermont 

$1000  Green Mountain Crossroads, Brattleboro, VT
$1000  Trans*farming VT, Burlington, VT

 

Washington 

$1000  Trans Advocacy Group Olympia, Olympia, WA

 

Wisconsin 

$1000  WI Trans Health, Madison, WI

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Announcing the 2015 Trans Justice Funding Project Facilitators

The Trans Justice Funding Project is pleased to announce its 2015 community-led grantmaking panel facilitators!

Black Dog Andrea

2015 TJFP Facilitator, Andrea Jenkins

TJFP facilitators are essential to our community-led grantmaking process.  They are committed to guiding panelists towards making grant awards rooted in our core values and work tirelessly to facilitate panelists moving money across the U.S.

In 2013 Nico Amador signed on to become TJFP’s very first facilitator.  In 2014, Nico (our facilitator hero) came back for more.

And in 2014, the fabulously brilliant Andrea Jenkins came on board as a community panelist.

For the 2015 cycle Nico and Andrea will join forces as co-facilitators, both drawing from years of organizing experience and expertise.

Nico Amador Bio Pic

2015 TJFP Facilitator, Nico Amador

Obviously, TJFP couldn’t possibly be any happier about that.

Please continue for facilitator bios!

Andrea Jenkins is an Award winning poet and writer. Most recently was awarded a Bush Fellowship and a Fellowship in the Cultural Community Leadership Institute at Intermedia Arts and sponsored by the Bush Foundation and named a fellow in the Many Voices Fellowship at the Playwrights Center. Last year she won the Verve Grant for Spoken Artist at Intermedia Arts and the Naked Stages Grant for Emerging Performance Artist at Pillsbury House Theatre. She is a Givens Foundation Fellow working Amiri Baraka and J. Otis Powell! She has won the Loft Mentor Series in 2002 and the Napa Valley Writers Conference scholarship in 2003.Andrea earned her Masters of Science, Community Economic Development –Southern New Hampshire University, Manchester, New Hampshire, a Certificate, University of St. Thomas, Community Leadership Institute, and Bachelors of Science, Human Services / Interpersonal Communications – Metropolitan State University and has a MFA in Creative Writing at Hamline University.

She has performed with The Outward Spiral, Mama Mosaic and many others. Andrea has self-published three chapbooks of poems called “tributaries: poems celebrating black history, “Pieces of a Scream: New and Selected Poems”, and “The “T” is NOT Silent”. She currently is co-curator of the Queer Voices Reading Series at Intermedia Arts. She has been published in several anthologies including, “Gender Outlaws Two: The Next Generation”, “When We Become Weavers: Queer Female Poets on the Midwestern Experience” edited by, Kate Lynn Hibbard and “The Naked I: Wide Open” and “The Naked I: Inside Out”, edited by 20% Theater and most recently in “Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Civil Rights: A Public Policy Agenda for Uniting a Divided America” edited by Dr. Wallace Swan.

Andrea works as a Senior Policy Aide to City Councilmember Elizabeth Glidden, serves as Board Chair at Intermedia Arts and lives in Minneapolis, MN.

Nico Amador grew up in California and is now a trainer, organizer and writer based in Philadelphia, PA. Nico got his start as a trainer working with youth around issues of oppression and leading workshops on the impacts of militarism and the prison industrial complex on people of color. As part of the Fellowship of Reconciliation’s Nonviolent Youth Collective, Nico helped to train volunteers preparing to do human rights work in Colombia, led week-long retreats on nonviolence and social justice, and organized a California arts and education tour.

As part of Training for Change, Nico has led workshops in the US, Canada and Europe for groups such as Choice USA, Iraq Veterans Against the War, the Energy Action Coalition, Greenpeace, the National Youth Advocacy Coalition, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the Earth Quaker Action Team, the New Sanctuary Movement, Prometheus Radio Project, and the Diverse City Fund.

Nico is also an experienced community organizer who has participated in grassroots efforts for prison abolition, urban farming, and keeping casinos out of residential neighborhoods. Most recently he led a campaign that successfully changed a policy that was causing harassment of transgender riders on Philadelphia’s public transportation system.

He has authored articles such as “Lessons from the Borders: Empowering Participants with Disabilities and Transgender Participants” and “Into the Streets! Training as a Tactic” and has published poetry in a few small journals and anthologies.

Please join us in welcoming Andrea and Nico.

 

 

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TJFP Behind the Scenes: Meet Marin Watts

Like many grassroots efforts, volunteers and interns are an essential. It takes a lot of love and people power to make things happen. Allow us to introduce one of our behind the scenes magic makers, Marin Watts.

MW2-2

Marin Watts, TJFP Volunteer

Multi-media artist, Marin Watts first sat down with TJFP in May of 2014 to brainstorm using media to make TJFP more visible.  Since then he’s generously volunteered his time and skills, documenting TJFP through photographs and film.  Marin lives in East Harlem, New York.

Why did you decide to volunteer with TJFP? I am committed to trans justice and fully support TJFP’s mission and goals. There is a tremendous lack of support for LGB organizations and projects, and an even bigger lack for organizations focusing on trans issues. To help promote trans justice and leadership, I’m dedicating my media skills to help increasing financial support for the trans community, and raise awareness of the amazing trans-led work already being done across the country. I volunteer with TJFP because my contributions extend to support to a larger network of trans-led projects across the country.

Why is trans justice work or funding trans justice work important to you? As a queer transman of color, I’ve overcome multiple obstacles in my life and have done so with the help of family, friends, and a larger network of community members. The trans community is underserved and is faced with a numerous road blocks. In my personal experiences, there has been multiple projects, services, and support groups, centered around trans justice that have helped me survive and thrive and also continue to motivate and inspire my work.

Since becoming a volunteer for TJFP/becoming a part of the organization, is there anything have you learned? Through TJFP’s process, they are creating a map of all these amazing organizations and projects that are involved in the movement! Although there is a lack of support for the trans community, folks are getting the work done. There is a lot of amazing work being done around the country that supports the trans community, and people are making it happen with very little resources, and when they have access to even just a little bit more funds, the work that can be accomplished is huge! Totally inspiring!

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time and/or what do you do when you’re not volunteering at TJFP?  I’m a multimedia artist and I run Media MA—an organization that empowers LGBTQ and allied youth through media! I really enjoy drinking good wine, eating delicious food, and hanging with my family and friends. I’m a very active bidder on Polaroid Spectra film on eBay, and am very seriously working on improving my BBQ and grill skills.

Thank you Marin for sharing your creativity and talents to document trans justice in action!  We continue to delight in working with you. 

 

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TJFP Behind the Scenes: Meet Cori Hook

Like many grassroots efforts, volunteers and interns are an essential. It takes a lot of love and people power to make things happen. Allow us to introduce one of our behind the scenes magic makers, Cori Hook.

Cori lives in Brooklyn, NY and has been volunteering for TJFP for six months.  Before becoming a volunteer, she began her support for TJFP as a donor.  When asked why it was important to her to donate she responded,  “I think it is essential to donate whether or not I have time to volunteer, as the foundation of TJFP is people that believe in the organization giving whatever they are able whether it’s $5 or $5,000. Every donation builds on each other not just creating a pot of funds to give to amazing work across the country, but fostering a collective of people who are the backbone of TJFP”.  Cori became a volunteer because she believes in TJFP’s mission and wanted to be a part of “implementing in addition to donating”.

Cori TJFP

Cori Hook, TJFP Volunteer

Here are a few addiontal things Cori shared:

Why is trans justice work or funding trans justice work important to you?  

I think it is a basic need to work and fund people and orgs who are addressing overlapping forms of oppression while examining areas of privilege and the ways that everything impacts on different levels personally and societally- Trans Justice in essence captures this. Because one day, I would like a year to pass without learning about the tragic death of a community member whether through one on one violence, police violence, social neglect, lack of appropriate medical care, lack of housing or …

Since becoming a volunteer with TJFP is there anything  you have learned?

How many amazing organizations/individual people are doing incredible, creative work! The range of needs for trans folks around the country depending on where people live- the beautiful commitment people give to each other monetarily and emotionally through the connection of TJFP.

Do you have any hopes or wishes for TJFP for the next few years?

To raise more money to give away! To have a secure long term staffed position to ensure that happens!

If you see yourself as an ally to trans justice work, how do you see your role as an ally and/or do you have anything to say to other allies?

Get involved! In whatever way feels good to you! Whether behind the scenes, communicating with other allies personally or leading workshops, pointing out when things could be changed, understanding and embracing what overlapping oppressions mean, giving what you can, don’t expect trans people to teach you.


What do you enjoy doing when you’re not volunteering at TJFP?

Currently, I am training to do a 285 mile bike ride from Boston to NYC for Braking Aids (brakingaidsride.org), which has given me a chance to raise money for an amazing organization as well as push myself mentally and physically beyond anything I have done before. Housing Works is the org, who at a grassroots level focuses on the dual crisis of HIV/AIDS and homelessness. Please go here to find out more about Housing Works and here if you want to help me meet my goal and enable me to go on this ride. I also volunteer at the Audre Lorde Project, hang out with my gf and get out of town and in the woods whenever possible.

Is there anything else you would like people to know about you? 

Phew, I think that was plenty!

Thank you Cori for all of your hard work!  TJFP is extremely lucky to have your support.

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TJFP Behind the Scenes: Meet Becca Wisotsky

Like many grassroots efforts, volunteers and interns are an essential. It takes a lot of love and people power to make things happen. Allow us to introduce one of our behind the scenes magic makers, Becca Wisotsky.

bw.color.stairs

Becca lives in Brooklyn, NY and has been volunteering for TJFP for a year. This weekend she’ll be representing TJFP as a presenter at Collective Dollars, Collective Sense: Giving circles and models of cross class philanthropy. This panel and workshop will take place at the Money for Our Movements conference in Baltimore, Maryland on Saturday, August 2nd at 4:15pm.

Here’s a little bit more about Becca and why she chooses to donate her time and resources to the Trans Justice Funding Project.

Why did you decide to volunteer with TJFP?

I’m inspired by TJFP’s approach to moving money through community led giving.  I believe each person/community knows whats best for them and should lead the way for justice. Allies can have a big part in this by taking direction and using their resources to support communities that are not their own and should – that is why I’m involved. I’m also involved with TJFP because I know that trans folks have extremely limited access to funding and face a tremendous amount of violence at multiple levels.  The fact that TJFP has identified and is funding groups who are leading from within without the support of being a 501c3 or with very little money and visibility is tremendous.  I know some of the most substantial and quality work comes from the ground up and that’s where I want to put my volunteer time and money – with groups that are leading the way on their own liberation.

Why is it important to you to donate in addition to being a volunteer?

TJFP is the first and only group where I am a monthly donor.  Monthly donations are critical to sustaining an organization and I can’t imagine a world without TJFP. I’m excited about community led giving to smaller groups as a method of philanthropy and justice. Why is trans justice work or funding trans justice work important to you?  Trans communities are often the community most impacted by the intersections of oppression and injustice. The people working to make trans lives – human lives – liberated from these injustices are few. As a middle class, cis gendered, femme of color queer who fits into the binary of mainstream community, I find it extra important to take on the responsibility to be a resource to all parts of the diverse and fabulous queer community, especially those facing the most barriers to survival.

Is there anything else you would like people to know about you?  I am a proud cat parent to my little cat friend Sebio and feel no shame about posting cat pictures online.  🙂

When Becca isn’t tirelessly volunteering to write grantee interviews or speak on behalf of TJFP, she might be found enjoying a nice glass of Rosé, taking dance lessons or delighting in yoga in the park.

Thank you Becca for all the ways you’ve supported TJFP over the last year.  We love working with you!

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