I often get asked about how members join us, so here’s a blog on the subject.
It’s the same process whether you join us as someone trans, non-binary, questioning or as a parent, partner or other person close to someone else who is.
The vast majority of our members contact us directly, using our website form, emailing us or calling in. Often people are shy or scared to contact us – some of them have not told anyone else or ever said it out loud. Some people get someone else, such as a friend, support worker or other supportive person to contact us first on their behalf. A few people are referred by someone such as a healthcare professional.
Once we are in contact, the first step is an assessment.
This is usually done over the telephone, though we do sometimes do a video call if needed. It takes around twenty minutes. This covers the basics such as name, age, pronouns. As well as a more detailed information such as mental health and where people are in their transition.
We also make people aware of the support that we offer at this stage, though we do not ask what they want to access. This is so that they can have a think about what they might want. Assessments are done by office staff.
The next step is the consultation.
These are done by a mix of office staff and a few select volunteers who are trained in how to do them. Consultations take 30 minutes minimum, often around 45 minutes. We have had one or two that run as long as an hour where the new member has had a lot to talk about. In the consultation we go over many of the same topics we cover in the assessment but in more detail.
If the member is trans, non-binary or questioning we also start a progress form with them. The reason we monitor progress is to do two main things. Firstly, it allows us to show the member how far they have come each time we do an update. Secondly it allows us to see how our members are doing more widely. For the progress form we talk about where the member sees themselves being in six months and where they see themselves being post-transition, as well as where they are now.
Once both the assessment and consultation are completed, we add them to our system and they start getting invites to groups that they are eligible to attend. They are put on waiting lists for the things that they want to access if a place is not immediately available.
Want to join us? Click here
Want to see what groups we have running at the moment? Click here