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Line drawing of two smiling faces with bicycle helmets on
September 1, 2020
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Congratulations to our Tour de Trans riders and support team. Paeton and Callum you are incredible. The work that has gone into the Tour by yourselves, Em your without whom there would have been no warm, no food and no vehicle and also by our Social Media team Callum and An and your tour manager Josie is truly humbling. What an epic ride. Neither rain nor storm nor glom of nit stopped our riders as they travelled from Land’s End to John O’Groats. The terrifying drop off of Purbeck Ridge and the wonderful welcome in Waymouth that made it all worth while. Cycling into Southampton and seeing the whole team there to meet them, we couldn’t have been prouder. Slogging it up country and finally over the border into Scotland where they really made an impact and finally got some sunshine too in Edinburgh. Then that epic, life defining moment as they cycled onto the most northern point of the mainland to “conclude the Tour de Trans”!

Check out their video here  and start thinking about getting involved because this isn’t over yet. Paeton has concluded their first ride but now they’ve recovered we can start planning for next year.

They have already raised over £1100!

Go and donate at the Go Fund Me

All money raised goes directly into funding Chrysalis, to providing our life saving services, to supporting our volunteers and to bringing back that face-to-face support groups.

I entitled this blog humbled and I truly am, I have stayed here safe in my office, looking out the window at the weather, thinking about the world going by and all the things we haven’t been able to enjoy this year and there are Paeton and Callum chasing their dreams, pushing onwards even when it seems impossible. Never giving up. Training even on the darkest of days, finding resources they never thought they had, selling their beloved landrover to buy their travelling accommodation for the trip. Em learning to tow and driving an epic journey, one that I wouldn’t have dreamed off in Tiny Car. Josie getting involved and then flying with the project, as well as continuing with her other volunteering for Chrysalis. You are all stars.

Back here at home things are more mundane but still so very important. We have been looking at what we need to do to bring some of the groups back to a face-to-face format and work is starting on the wonderful world of Risk Assessments. Chrysalis excels at creating safe spaces for mental wellbeing, now it’s up to us to bring that talent and skill to physical wellbeing too. How can we provide you with the means to break down your barriers of isolation whilst keeping you as safe as possible? Get involved, join the consultation on the 23rd September to put your thoughts forward. Check out your email for your invite from Dawn.

Last week was all about supervision, and storms, but mainly supervision and I really don’t feel I can speak about storms when Paeton and Callum have just defied them, indeed I think perhaps I should never speak about storms and weather again unless I’ve been out in it, pushing myself to the limits of endurance and beyond, but I digress. Where was I? Oh yes supervision and pushing oneself.

The lockdown has affected us all in our own ways, we’ve railed against the restrictions but in lots of ways we have also complied. Some have had to keep going out but for many we turned our worlds upside down and worked hard to do everything we did face to face in the virtual world. That came at a cost, we had to make offices out of corners, share spaces that weren’t designed to be shared, balance laptops on toilet rolls and take down pictures and personal effects to create a more neutral and professional space. I know I’ve become comfortable here in the Pride Cave, it’s easy to go downstairs for food and to pop back into the office for some more work after dinner. It’s been easy to enjoy those extra moments in bed, knowing that my commute is across the landing.

So the time has come to recognise that I too have become a product of the environment and I need to push myself back out there, which means that I want to take as many people on that journey as are willing to come along and so part of supervision last week was to encourage the counsellors to come back to face-to-face supervision. Lets get back into rooms with people and see what it feels like.

Do you know what? I’m actually getting quite excited to think I might finally get to use that brand new sofa in the office, six months after it was delivered!

People sitting on sofa in office
I’m looking forward to getting back to using the Chrysalis sofa, last used back in March!

This week looks quite empty, a week without many meetings what will I do? Never fear there’s plenty happening: the aforementioned risk assessments and planning to return to face-to-face groups, grant applications for funding because moving to blended support will require an uplift in planning, admin, volunteers and workload for the office team, conference work and discussions about fundraising. As we move into autumn it’s time to think about #flythetransflag, Trans Awareness Week and Trans Day of Remembrance.

I will leave you with a photograph of Helena – I have finally found the way to get my seat back, it’s not great when your colleague claims your chair.

Cat on desk with large pot of treats
How to bribe your colleague


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