And welcome to Tuesday! I hope that you all had a good bank holiday and that the storm last night hasn’t caused too much damage around you. Today we woke up to no water, which always makes for an exciting start to the day. Here’s hoping that Southern Water get everything fixed soon because I really need that morning coffee.
A couple of weeks ago I was contacted by one of our friends in the NHS who asked me if I would consider signing up as a Vaccination Champion. Someone who would help with sharing up to date information on the various Covid-19 vaccines out there and work within their community to break down barriers which could stop trans, non-binary and questioning people accessing their vaccines. “Sign me up!” I said with feeling, “like everyone else I am looking forward to the best way out of this pandemic we can have. I want to return to face-to-face meetings, to be able to go out without worrying. To be able to see my friends and family and to resume some form of normal life.”
Last week was full of good news, we now have a date to return to the Chrysalis office (28th June) and a roadmap to reopening our face-to-face groups and counselling, with pilots planned in Southampton and Bournemouth, those areas where we have the largest number of members who have not been able to access our online support. Watch your inboxes for a members survey soon.
So what does my being a Vaccination Champion mean to you, dear reader? Firstly it means that I, and the Chrysalis team, have access to the latest information on the vaccine rollout, we have confidence in the program and can share that with you. Watch out for our information posts and if you’ve got any questions we will try to answer them, or pass you on to people who can.
Secondly it means that we are working with the NHS and Hampshire County Council to make the experience better for trans, non-binary and questioning people. We are listening to your concerns and taking them to the people who can make change happen so that you can feel safe, respected and understood when you go to the vaccination centre. I am already speaking with the team about training; pronouns; and some of the barriers that trans* people will experience or expect, but I am no self confessed expert in your world and so please fill out our survey (link below) to give us your thoughts, feelings and experiences and lets make the most of this opportunity to really make health care in the South inclusive.
Change is yet again afoot in the world of Chrysalis: we are putting the finishing touches onto our three year business plan; reorganising the staff team and our working week and looking to the future. No more will we coexist with Covid, but we shall flourish in the sunshine after the storm; we are planning a series of face-to-face relaunch events linked together by our incredible Tour de Trans riders; and I’m looking forward to our Staff and Volunteer Celebration day which Carla will be announcing soon, at which attendees can expect some really exciting news and the chance to get involved in our biggest change yet (watch this space, teasers to follow!).
So have a good, short, week and I’ll see you very soon.
Survey link: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/3S6K8MP