Prison visits

Occasionally, as part of the talks that i give, I get asked what we do as part of the Beaumont Trust Trans prisoners project that i run.

As you’ll probably expect, i can’t go into specifics of prisoner details, but i thought I’d share with you some general details about what a visit is like.

Using the Prisoner Voicemail system, prisoners will usually reach out to us regularly asking for help, information, or maybe just as someone to listen to their general routine and progress on classes or rehabilitation programmes they are working on. We can then listen to these messages and respond to them, keeping an exchange of info going between the prisoner and Trust, which on it’s own might not seem like much, but, when you’re inside and abandoned by your family and subject to abuse, can make a real powerful difference.

About once a month, prisoners will reach out for an arranged visit. Usually on a weekend, when there isn’t much going on, or when it’s mutually convenient. At this point I’ll ring the prison to let them know I’m coming (experience shows this is a good idea) and then arrange the specifics of any visits. Some of those I’ve done up until now have been

  • Makeovers
    Training
    Book reading
    Meditation class
    Pride and scene updates

Talking about each in turn briefly

Makeovers. In these sessions, (which require a lot of pre planning and willingness from the prison director) I’ll take in a range of samples and sponges and makeover a prisoner, while other transwomen look through the makeup and any books i bring in while they’re waiting. We’ll then chat about looks they may want to try the next time I come visit. It’s a pretty fraught hour and hard work !!!

Training. Sometimes the prisoner will want to arrange training for the staff of the prison as part of a coaching or mentoring activity. These visits tend to be a lot more straightforward than any sessions which require you to bring in physical items and usually take the form of a TED talk around a table with whatever officers are able to attend.

Book ReadingWhere we do book readings ill being in a number of copies of a book and, w we’ll take roles and sit around a table, acting out the story. These are great fun, as the inmates get to express themselves, practice their feminine voices and thespian skills.

It’s great fun and quite a scene. (I wholeheartedly apologise to some of the authors we might have offended !!)

Meditation
Meditation classes help with improving prisoners mental health. Something which is particularly important for trans prisoners who will often experience feelings of isolation and abuse while inside. Reactions to these conditions vary, but will usually include self harm, or violence against others and in the worst cases attempts of suicide.

On top of these activities, I also try to collect magazines to send in to prisoners, particularly trans magazines like Transliving, which help inform prisoners of the trans scene outside of their prison and help make them feel part of something. We’ve also historically sent in clothes, by special arrangement, but this is type of activity is reducing because many prisons are now actively preventing this.

Would you like to be involved in this ? Maybe you have an idea of somethig you would like to share that would help us improve the lives of transwomen in prison ? I’d love to hear from you ! Drop me a message with your details and I’ll be happy to get in touch.

Transgender Empowerment: Making the World a Better Place

I believe we are living in an age of Transgender empowerment. Transgender women the world over are increasingly making positive contributions to society and its various communities. By and large, they are increasingly empowered to take decision about different aspects of their life and profession.
Benefits of Transgender Empowerment:
  • Transgender empowerment adds to confidence of Transgender women in their ability to lead meaningful and purposeful lives. It removes their dependence on others and makes them individuals in their own right.
  • They are able to lead their lives with dignity and freedom.
  • It adds to their self esteem.
  • It gives them a distinct identity.
  • They are able to gain positions of respect in society.
  • They are able to make meaningful contributions to the well-being of society.
  • They act as capable citizens to make the country achieve enhanced Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth.
  • Studies have shown that by letting Transgender women express themselves in their authentic identity, they make a more profitable contribution to a companies results.
  • They get fair and equitable access to resources of the company and country.
Necessity of Transgender’s Empowerment
  • Without Transgender womens empowerment, we cannot remove injustice and gender bias and inequalities.
  • If Transgender women are not empowered, they cannot enjoy security and protection in life.
  • It also provides them a safe working environment.
  • Empowerment acts as a powerful tool against exploitation and harassment of Transgender women.
  • It is a great means to get adequate legal protection for Transgender women.
  • If not socially and economically empowered, Transgender women cannot develop their own identity.
  • Transgender women are highly creative and intelligent which makes it imperative to receive their contributions in socio-economic activities.
  • For a just and progressive society, Transgender women need to be provided equal opportunities for work
Means of Transgender Empowerment
  • Education: Without proper and adequate education, Transgender women cannot become empowered individuals. They need to be encouraged to go for higher studies so that they can contribute significantly in the creation of a knowledge society.
  • Communication Skills: Without developing skills for effective communication, Transgender women cannot make their voices heard.  It is essential for them to communicate effectively to become successful. As leaders, they need to put across their points to the people so that a family, team or company can be effectively managed.
  • Disposable Income: Transgender women need to earn well to have their say in important financial decisions governing their lives. Being financially independent gives Transgender women power over their lives and also contributes to the growth of businesses.
  • Power of Internet: Access to the internet has opened the floodgates of knowledge and awareness and increased social interaction reach, influence and understanding of the needs of Transgender women. The liberalizing influence of the World Wide Web has broken all taboos, myths and misconceptions regarding Transgender women and the LGBTQIA community.
Conclusion:  Transgender Empowerment helps to make the society and world a better place to live in and march forward on way to inclusive participation. It means increase happiness for the family and the organizations where Transgender women make a difference.

Press Release – YNotbU Angel Investment in Transortium

Transortium

We were delighted to hear about Heather Flanagan’s work in establishing a new organisation in the United States called Transortium. Speaking to Heather it quickly became clear that not only did she share a lot of the same values we do, but also had a compelling vision for improving the issues Transgender people face when it comes to integrating into society, pre, during and post transition.

Heathers goal for Transortium is that it should be a hub for bridging the gap between the Trans community and wider society. This bridge is not only made up of information and resources, but training for organisations and the trans community as well.  Through these initiatives they hope to be able to facilitate and ease integration between the transgender community and the wider society.

Because we share in Transortums values and mission, we were only too pleased to be become not only a founding Angel investor in the organisation, but also their partner in the United Kingdom.

You can find out about the Transortium organisation by clicking on any of the following links, or by dropping us a message.  We’ll be only to pleased to help you.

Website

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