One of my favorite things about being a co-owner in a non-hierarchal, collectively run business is the ability to support the community that we come from. We do this through donations of money or our services whenever we can. Recently we donated some money to help the DC Trans Coalition (DCTC) with a project they began a few months ago. DCTC is conducting a needs assessment report on the state of the welfare of transsexual, transgender, and gender non-conforming individuals in the DC metro area. According to Sadie Ryanne Vashti, a long-time volunteer for DCTC, the goal of this project is “to give a voice to many different trans communities in DC and to help activists in the city set priorities as they try to help improve the lives of trans people in the District.”

DCTC is a non-hierarchal non-profit coalition. They remain self-funded and completely volunteer run so that they can remain loyal and dedicated to the communities they serve and not to foundations and donors. DCTC has been together since 2005. During this time, they have led campaigns to address police brutality, employment discrimination, access to identity documents, and many other pressing issues facing trans communities in DC.

The first stage of the needs assessment project is round table discussions consisting of different trans communities. The goal is to hold 10 of these, each representing a different segment of the trans community. DCTC asked businesses and community groups to sponsor one round table, This sponsorship would cover costs related to making the round table’s as accessible as possible, such as transportation, food, $25 gift cards to grocery stores for their time, and translation. The second stage is a written survey that will consist of questions developed from the results of the round table discussions. This is so that the end published product will have been community driven and truly representative of the current state of trans rights and well being in DC.

We at Brighter Days are excited to be able to help out with this very important task, and that it will hopefully result in equal rights for trans people living in DC. We    are proud to have sponsored one of these round table discussions held a couple weeks ago. For more information about DCTC, or the Needs Assessment you can visit their website at: