Opening up online groups had always been in our plan. It was just meant to be… later. So it was with bated breath and some anxiously steep learning curves that we plunged into online groups this past spring — rather than gingerly tiptoeing into it in the winter. Staff and volunteers alike have stretched themselves mightily to accommodate life during a pandemic. And as nerve wracking as it has occasionally been to adjust to Zoom life, being here in these spaces with you has helped keep our tanks filled.
How can I possibly fully express my love and gratitude for you?
Our parent-space facilitators are themselves parents. And you have continued to show up with open hearts and patience and kindness for other parents like yourselves. You have worked through technology frustrations and first-timer butterflies and what-if-they-ask-something-I-can’t-answer fears to hold space for families who are confronting big emotions about their child’s gender diversity. If not for you and your dedication and loyalty, we would not be able to have so many parent groups every month. And we would definitely not be able to have them in Spanish.
It took the better part of 2020, but we finally worked through the hitches to open up online youth spaces to take the place our lost face-to-face youth groups. Our youth groups are facilitated mainly by trans/nonbinary adults – all of whom answered our call for help with enough enthusiasm to make us blush. And you are ROCKING IT. As of today, our youth Zoom group is the most heavily attended of all our groups. That is because of our charming, smart, creative, loving youth-space volunteers who make the conversations fun and honest.
This community — of trans/nonbinary youth and adults, their parents, siblings, and caregivers — is revolutionary in the history U.S. mainstream culture. But for you, and me, and many families across the nation (and the world, for sure), it is simply friendship, camaraderie, a helping hand, a drive to give back, and a place to laugh at our own foibles, celebrate our milestones.
Thank you to all of our facilitators, moderators, translators, mentors, site administrators, donors, and board members for making this organization GO. We literally could not do this without you. And we wouldn’t want to.
Nikki Neuen, Executive Director
and whole Trans Families staff