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Josie on a bike smiling, holding trans flag (blue, pink and white stripes) and wearing rainbow trousers. Tree and grass in background
October 5, 2020
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Congratulations Josie, Chrysalis volunteer of the month.

Josie has been a constant volunteer throughout lockdown. Nothing was too much trouble when asked, especially when she was asked to help support and promote the Tour de Trans. Little did we know how she was going to throw herself into this project and sporting her rainbow trousers she followed the ride all around the country. We just want her to know how special she is to us here at Chrysalis and thank her for the many many hours of time she put into this project.” – Sheila, Volunteer Coordinator

When Paeton first came forward with their idea of Tour de Trans it was obvious that their energy and ability was going to need some pretty incredible support so Sheila put a shout out to the volunteers and Josie came forward. Josie’s tirelessness and dedication matched Paeton and their ride team’s: bringing together media, sports organisations, trans groups and others across the country, raising nearly £2000 for Chrysalis and giving light to Paeton’s dream that the ride would be Across Britain, Across Genders. When Josie’s name was put forward for this award I could think of no other more deserving.

Chrysalis is about bringing people together, breaking down the barriers of isolation, having someone to talk to and share the good stuff as well as the challenges and everyone who is part of Chrysalis both gains from others and gives something in return. People come to us to volunteer because they want to give something back; because they can’t stand to see discrimination impacting others; because someone they love has needed support; because they want to be part of that upswell of change and positivity so evident in Josie’s smile and they get back empowerment, experience, enjoyment and life long friends and connections. Just a couple of weeks ago I heard from Gillian who used to facilitate the Southampton group and Jamie who is joining us as a volunteer with a view to opening a group in Chichester.

You don’t need to be local to volunteer. Our ourstanding webmistress and IT Technical Lead are both from North of London, the incredible Josie is off to Bristol and Facilitator Alan is now in Exeter. Remote volunteering is most definitely here to stay as we develop our online support services and all learn more about what it is to connect in the virtual world.

If you are interested in finding out more about volunteering then check out our vacancies page for both remote and face-to-face roles. Don’t fancy any of those but do have something that you really want to offer us? Fill out a volunteer application form and just tell us what it is you’d like to do. We always need office volunteers, project leads and those with some time on their hands to dedicate to making the world a better place.

Conference 2020

Keeping up the remote theme, recognising the connections that Josie and Tour de Trans built across the nation, the Chrysalis team is working hard on our AGM on Saturday 7th November followed by Trans Awareness Week and Trans Day of Remembrance 20th November and our third conference on Friday 27th November 10am – 2pm.

Check back in for sneak previews of some of our stellar line up of speakers including Stephen Whittle, Joanne Lockwood, Lucia Lucas, Julie Miller, Leng Montgomery and Maximillian Mustafa-Holzapfel. Come and find out Why Gender Identity Matters here in 2020. Meet professionals for whom being trans is simply an aspect of their life but for whom inclusion and acceptance is absolutely key, meet the allies and those who made a difference to their colleagues and loved ones, come and find out more about what it is that Chrysalis does in our quest to enable everyone to be their authentic self.

The week that was

Another week of sitting in front of the computer, of alternating between looking at the camera so it looks like you’re looking at someone and then looking at someone so you can see what they look like. The world of online working is becoming more natural to me, so natural in fact I’m not sure I haven’t sprouted roots here at this office chair in the back room, but that’s a blog for another day.

Last week was supervision week. Catching up with some of our incredible team of counsellors and working with them on developing their relationships with their clients. Congratulations to Helen who has been awarded her Advanced Diploma in Psychotherapy and to Grecia who has been awarded her Level 5 Counselling and Psychotherapy qualification, it’s a pleasure to work with both of you.

Thursday Dawn and I booked the day out – an away day at our computers – another new experience from 2020. You know what though? It actually worked. We got so much done! Opening with a discussion on all the applications we have received for Administration Assistant and Volunteer Coordinator and closing on #FlytheTransFlag as we prepare to launch our Allies Voice Campaign encouraging allies everywhere to fly the trans flag during Trans Awareness Week 13th to 19th November.

Friday I actually left the office. It was strange, there were people and masks and hand sanitiser and apps and yes the incredible Julie Miller. So good to see our Dorset Area Coordinator in person again for a catch up over drinks in Portswood.

The week that will be

Gosh! Today is Monday 5th October. Halloween is coming closer, I think I need to find my slippers as the temperature drops. If you listen very carefully you’ll hear the cat snoring behind me!

Fluffy tortoishell cat curled up on coloured and white furnishings
It’s a hard life being a cat

This week is all about evening meetings, catching up with the Bournemouth team on Wednesday and then the Trustee Meeting on Thursday. I’d better be off now to finish gathering up all the statistics and get my report prepared.

See you next Monday.


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