Tag Archives: TransJustice

From the Ground to the Sky Listening Tour: Southern Edition

“As a local organizer and activist in your area what do you vision, hope or dream for trans/two-spirit/queer/gender non- conforming people in your area?”

“Can you tell us how your group got started or how you first got involved in trans justice organizing?”

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These a just a few of the questions we asked several grantees, applicants, TGNC activists, organizers, and community members on our From the Ground to the Sky Listening Tour: Southern edition

Having previously traveled to places like Montana, South Dakota, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah, this time we headed to the South Eastern region to expand our knowledge around what local trans justice looks and feels like in the Deep South.  

TJFP spent two weeks moving between Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, and Louisiana, driving along tree lined highways, in between mountain hallows, witnessing cotton fields, and bright city lights. Several times over, we saw common themes making themselves apparent from community to community.  Yet, nothing stood out as much as the importance and need to create safety and shift the conditions at home, as well as the sense of duty of bringing knowledge back to their people.

For many, the option of leaving home for more liberal areas with more trans affirming infrastructure is not always an option or even a desire. One local activist passionately stated, “Why can’t I be safe in Arkansas?”  Her desire to staying where things are familiar and where her family lives, is the driving force to not leave and to continue to work towards finding and creating community for her and other black trans woman like her.

Another thing that we heard over and over again, was the need for space to meet in to get work done, resources for traveling to meet other trans and gender non-conforming organizers so they won’t have to ‘reinvent the wheel,’ and could feel more connect to a broader network of TGNC peers. Even with things like internet access or tools like Skype and conference calls, for those who are able to travel, being face to face still remains a powerful method for breaking down isolation and unifying our leaders.

Like most places, the South has a complex and painful past.  And yet, it’s beauty and the activists we met along the way, have a deep love for their communities, their home, and their histories. Every person we spoke with reaffirmed that we should all have the right to stay at home if we wish to and have the ability to be safe as well as have our most basic needs to deepest desires met. 

From the historic Selma, Alabama to the colorful lights of New Orleans, Louisiana–which still bares the scares of the storm–we thank each and every person who took the time to allow us to record your trans justice organizing history. We hope your experiences, words, and efforts will be taken to heart and supported.

From state to state we come to understand more and more, we exist because you exist.

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TJFP’s From the Ground to the Sky tour: Alabama

After spending an amazing five days in Tennessee and Mississippi, we drove East to Alabama and our first stop was the historic Selma. We could feel the momentous energy of the city the minute we arrived. The first thing we did was pick up our camera’s and walk over the Edmund Pettus Bridge. This bridge was the site of Bloody Sunday where an estimated 500 – 600 civil rights marchers were brutally attacked by state troopers as they headed from Selma to Montgomery in support of the Selma Voting Rights Campaign in 1965.

Later that day, we met with activist Quentin Bell, local Selman and founder of The Knights and Orchids Society (TKO). We sat outside along the Alabama River, at sunset and listened to Quentin talk about how the history of his hometown inspires him everyday to fight for trans justice in Selma.

That night we drove back to Birmingham, full of life and firmly committed to justice and liberation for our trans community. It was only heightened when we spoke to Daroneshia Duncan, founder of TAKE (Transgender Advocates Knowledgeable Empowering), an organization that provides supportive services to transgender people in Alabama. Our conversations with Daroneshia came on the heels of two recent attacks on trans women of color in Alabama–Jazz Alford, who was shot and killed and another, a member of TAKE, who was shot and is currently still in the hospital.

As we left the city of Birmingham we watched the landscape once again transition back into windy country roads, lined with thick beautiful forests. The words and experiences of Quentin, Daroneshia, and other Alabamans we spoke to, stay with us.

Our ancestors who crossed that bridge in Selma were met by state police and beaten, and those Civil Rights protesters continued to fight even after “Bloody Sunday”.  Many of the lessons of the past are also our blueprint for our future and we cannot afford to lose our history or each other.  Thank you to everyone we spoke with in Alabama and for being exactly who you are, where you are.

Stay tuned as we our share highlights from our next stop, Little Rock Arkansas!

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Funding The Revolution!

TFAAN_2016A very special thank you to Bishop Tonyia Rawls and The Freedom Center for Social Justice (FCSJ) for inviting TJFP to the Transgender Faith and Action Network’s (TFAAN) annual retreat.

What an honor it was to be welcomed into this space and to have the opportunity to speak with Southern trans and gender non-conforming faith leaders and allies about TJFP’s funding model and what trans justice looks like across the country!

Looking forward to next year!

 

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Join TJFP at the 12th Annual Trans Day of Action!

TDOA 2016

Trans Justice Funding Project will be joining TransJustice of the Audre Lorde Project at the 12th annual Trans Day of Action at Washington Square Park from 3-6 PM this Friday, June 24th.

Join us as we march, rally, and lift up the work of our communities working towards social and economic justice!

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Just $2,800 away from our goal! Can you get us there?

Thanks to so many of you we are now just $2,800 away from meeting fundraising goal of $25,ooo!

Tomorrow our community funding panel will arrive in New York to meet to give money away.  If we meet our goal by midnight tonight, the funding panel will be able to give away $200,000 to grass roots, trans-led, trans justice groups across the country.  So this is your last change to give to this year’s fundraising campaign.

It’s a powerful feeling to redistribute money and fund such import work so let’s raise $$$ we’ve never seen before!

There’s no such thing as a donation too small because every $1 matters.

Lastchance_2016

 

 

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Reimagine funding with TJFP!

Thank you to 2014 TJFP Panelist, Sebastian Margaret for speaking about the importance of disability justice and funding!

Please help TJFP continue to support some of the most cruicial trans justice work happening across the county.

 

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Introducing 2016 TJFP Panelist, Stephanie Mott!

Stephanie Mott, 2016 TJFP Panelist

Stephanie Mott, 2016 TJFP Panelist

We’re so honored to have Stephanie Mott join the TJFP 2016 grant making panel!

Stephanie is the Executive Director and President of Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project (K-STEP) and the Founder/Director of the Transgender Faith Tour. She has been a columnist for Liberty Press and lgbtSr, and a volunteer blogger for Huffington Post. She has published more than 100 articles about being transgender. As the executive director of K-STEP, she has provided nearly 400 workshops and presentations related to gender identity in venues from college classes to mental health centers to jails and prisons. She is currently serving as the community liaison for transgender inmates with the Shawnee County (Kansas) Jail.

Stephanie is also currently serving as the state vice-chair of Equality Kansas. In addition, she is a board member of the Topeka Human Relations Commission, the Topeka Chief of Police Advisory Board, Topeka Pride, and Capital City Equality Center, as well as serving on the advisory board for the Beacon Youth Group. Her awards include the Pioneer Woman from the University of Kansas Emily Taylor Center for Women and Gender Equity, the Kansas Stonewall Marsha P. Johnson Award for Exceptional Activism, and the Donna Love Award for Outstanding Social Work Student from Washburn University.

We can barely contain our excitement!

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Introducing 2016 TJFP Panelist, Asher Kolieboi!

TJFP 2016 Panelist

Asher Kolieboi, 2016 TJFP Panelist

TJFP is excited to introduce the first of our six grant making panelists, Asher Kolieboi!

Asher hails from Saint Louis, Missouri, by way of Monrovia, Liberia. A longtime LGBTQ and racial justice community organizer, Asher currently serves as the Assistant University Chaplain at Johns Hopkins University.  In addition to his work as a minister, Asher has worked with the National LGBT Task Force, Planned Parenthood, the Center For Progressive Leadership, and the Trans 100. Asher co-organized the 2010 Soulforce Equality Ride, a two-month bus tour of young adults ages 18-28 who traveled to Christian colleges and universities to discuss the intersections of LGBTQ identities and faith. Later that year, he co-founded Legalize Trans, a trans affirming t-shirt company and social media campaign. In 2011 Asher launched (un)heard: Transmasculine People of Color Speak! An ethnographic audio-visual installation about the experiences of transmasculine people of color that debuted at Princeton University that year.

We are so excited to be able to share space and learn from you Asher!

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TJFP at Creating Change in Chicago!

Any chance you’re at Creating Change in Chicago, Illinois?

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2015 TJFP Grantee TSTAR from Louisville, KY

If you are, TJFP will be speaking today, Thursday, January 21 at 3:15 PM to brainstorm and skill share how we have survived and how we can thrive within and outside the system at Power On: Building Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Economic Justice.

And later today find us at the Trans Justice Funding Project table to pick up our hot-off-the-press 2015 report!  It’s beautiful and packed with so much information that we just know you won’t want to miss out on! Come say hi! #cc16 #transjustice

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It’s Not Your Last Chance!

unnamedOk, ok… while today is your last chance to make a tax-deductible gift in 2015 , it isn’t your last chance to support TJFP!

Because many grassroots groups are not 501c3s and don’t have fiscal sponsors, we have a innovative model to support these groups simply and directly. We think this model is an exciting opportunity to support grassroots organizing and that means you can still make donations to support the 2016 cycle until May.

In 2015 TJFP recieved over 140 applications.  Our community grantmaking panel of trans and gender non conforming activist carefully read over each application, distributing $192,500 amongst 85 grantees.   Just think of what we could do with your help in the coming year!  No amount too small!

Wishing us all a new year full of love and liberation.  Love, TJFP

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