In honor of Transgender Awareness Week, the LifeSkills project of The Fenway Institute and the Boundlessand Living Well series at Fenway Health hosted the debut screening of Fenway’s “I AM: Trans People Speak” video from 6 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, November 14 in the auditorium of Fenway’s 1340 Boylston Street, Boston home. That video is available on Youtube at fenwayhealth.org/IAmTrans.
Directed and produced by Jesse Begenyi of Anchors Aweigh Media and the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC), the Fenway video is the latest contribution to the national “I AM: Trans People Speak” campaign. The “I AM” project raises awareness about the diversity that exists within transgender communities. It gives a voice to transgender individuals, as well as their families, friends, and allies. In addition to the video screening, the event featured a conversation with the filmmaker, video participants and Fenway staff as well as appetizers and a community toast.
The “I AM” video release party was just one of 3 Fenway-sponsored events for Transgender Awareness Week. On Tuesday, November 13, the week kicked off with the first in a series of community discussions on trans masculine sexualities and health. In collaboration with MTPC, AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts, Living Well, and, introducing the Trans Masculine Health Collective, this event is expected to lead to future programming for gay, bisexual, queer, transgender men/FTMs and other trans men who have sex with men.
The week culminates with the Transgender Day Of Remembrance, a worldwide gathering of trans and allied communities to memorialize victims of anti-trans hatred or prejudice since the murder of Rita Hester in Boston on November 28, 1998. On Sunday, November 18, Fenway staff will join MTPC and the larger community to remember our departed friends, loved ones, and community members. The community speak-out, candlelight vigil and reception will take place at St. Paul’s Cathedral, 138 Tremont St., Boston, from 4 to 7 pm.
For more than forty years, Fenway Health has been working to make life healthier for the people in our neighborhood, the LGBT community, people living with HIV/AIDS and the broader population. The Fenway Institute at Fenway Health is an interdisciplinary center for research, training, education and policy development focusing on national and international health issues. Fenway’s Sidney Borum Jr. Health Center cares for youth and young adults ages 12 to 29 who may not feel comfortable going anywhere else, including those who are LGBT or just figuring things out; homeless or living on the streets; struggling with substance use or abuse; sex workers; or living with HIV/AIDS. The Fenway Institute’s LifeSkills project is a 12 month research study that focuses on empowering young trans women to reduce sexual risk behavior and improve their lives.