Today I’d like to tell you two stories of people who would never know what an impact they had had on my life had not the streams of time brought us back together after over 20 years. The first a punk who came and sat down with a group of metallers in the park and showed us that it was OK to cross barriers, that it was OK to be different and that we had more in common than we thought. The second a person in a crowd at a gig who offered to put me on his shoulders, a common enough happenstance at that band’s concerts, something that many people take for granted but something never before, or since, offered to me.
Both of these people had completely forgotten those encounters, but they stayed with me. Both of those encounters changed how I viewed myself and others, empowered me to be a bit kinder, a bit less afraid and a bit more able to view myself as OK. Last year I was able to say thank you to the person with the strong shoulders, and last week at training I was able to reconnect with the punk from all those years ago. A kind person then and a kind person now as I welcome our newest Southampton volunteer, Mike, we couldn’t ask for a better person to join the Chrysalis team. Welcome
With everything being up in the air: head office moving to Southampton today; Basingstoke Trans and Questioning group changing night to Wednesdays; with a new website and blog posting methodology to get my head round; with @ChrysalisGIM growing and changing and ever developing; with new trainers and training courses; with lots of annual leave to use up I feel I have forgotten to keep up my connection with all of you. I have trusted that our bond is strong enough that you will be here when I return. I have faith in you, I believe in you, but also I apologise to you: I am sorry if you have felt left out, sorry if you haven’t been able to keep up with the changes, sorry if you were relying on me to keep you up to date.
So what has been going on?
Last week was mainly admin, well actually it was admin on Tuesday and Wednesday and we have now gone live with the promotion for our third annual conference. This time it’s in Bournemouth, thanks to Bournemouth University for hosting, and this time it’s free so get registered quickly cos those 200 spaces are going to fill up fast. Using all our experience and expertise, showcasing the work that Chrysalis and other organisations do, this conference is the opportunity to find out Why #GenderIdentityMatters2020. Click the link to find out more https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/genderidentitymatters2020-tickets-95793030533
Thursday saw Maximillian delivering our Trans Awareness and Working with Trans Clients training to a packed house at Unity 12. With attendees from Spectrum and Unity 12, HSBC, the NHS and Chrysalis’ own volunteers this was a great session with much conversation and has already received rave reviews. One of the great things about developing Chrysalis is that I am part of something so much bigger. Seeing our training delivered by someone else was brilliant, Maximillian is a great presenter and brings his very own energy to the day. Congratulations Max, you did good.
What’s on this week? Well this week I haven’t got any annual leave booked but I am off on Monday 2nd March so please don’t worry if you haven’t heard from me.
This week is another packed week
Firstly, thanks to the awesome office team and Sammy and Carole because by the end of the week we will be happy in our new home. Offices 2 and 3 upstairs at Unity 12, Rose Road, Southampton. It’s so exciting to be moving in with like minded organisations. I can’t wait.
Tomorrow and Friday I’m going to be busy supervising, so many wonderful counsellors, so much incredible work. Oh yes, if ever you want to say thanks to your counsellor and give them a shout out on our shiny new website then why not email the office with a bit of praise?
Wednesday I’m off to London to meet with Frankie from Tudor Trust, those wonderful people who fund my salary and without whom we really would not be, and then Thursday, thanks to Russell Thackeray at www.qedod.com I’m off to a conference D&I Leaders LGBT+ at Work Conference 2020, it’ll be very nice to be the one listening and learning for a change.