“I want you to hear my story.”

by Fiona, Trans Employment Program Participant
“I want you to hear my story.”
– Fiona | Trans Employment Program Participant 

Trans life is difficult. Despite being an accomplished student—a National Merit Scholarship finalist, a UC Berkeley graduate, and law school graduate—I always struggled with the feeling that I didn’t belong. I refused to accept the possibility that I could be trans.  

After graduation, I continued to struggle. Worrying about my gender expression and being “discovered” made it difficult to focus and undermined my self-confidence. Denial of who I was led me to depression, anxiety, and immense self-doubt. 

Eventually, I allowed myself to recognize that I was trans. I started hormone replacement therapy, but my life was still in shambles. So I made an appointment with Naomi, a staff member at the SF LGBT Center’s Trans Employment Program, and everything changed.  

Thanks to Naomi’s interview coaching and employer network, I found a supportive workplace where I can bring my whole self to work every day. I’ve broken my cycle of depression and self-medication. I’m on a brand-new, healthy, productive path, and I’m looking forward to the future, where I plan to use my legal skills to advocate for other LGBTQ+ people in need.

Trans life is still difficult for me and many others. I live every day with the knowledge that 70% of us get assaulted and 40% of us are driven to attempt suicide over the course of our lifetimes. But this life is still worlds better than the one I had before I recognized I was trans. 

The Center’s Trans Employment Program and other Center services—like housing, financial assistance, and youth programs—are vital to making sure our community members can move beyond survival and actually thrive. 

Will you ensure we all get a shot at success by supporting the Center today? Plus, if you make your gift by December 31st, every dollar donated up to $50,000 will be MATCHED for twice the impact.

From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank you—because when you give to the Center, you create a place that changes lives. I know, because it changed mine.


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