Celebrating National Transgender Day of Visibility 2023
By Leo Kirkham
National Transgender Day of Visibility, celebrated on March 31, was founded in 2009 by transgender activist Rachel Crandall as a response to the lack of holidays celebrating transgender people, citing frustration that the only well-known transgender holiday was the Transgender Day of Remembrance.
Transgender Day of Visibility is a day to celebrate the transgender community and our diverse experiences and identities. It is a day to celebrate trans joy and the ways that transgender people are alive and well and living joyous, fulfilling lives.
Yes, trans people experience discrimination and tragedy, but that is not our whole story. We also experience love, friendship, happiness, chosen family, and long, happy lives. Here are five ways to celebrate Transgender Day of Visibility and honor your transgender sisters, brothers, and siblings.
1. Attend or volunteer at a local Transgender Day of Visibility event and celebrate with others in the community.
2. Follow and engage with transgender advocates and organizations on social media. Some people and groups to follow are:
- Jazz Jennings, trans youth activist and public figure: @jazzjennings_
- Schuyler Bailar, 1st trans D1 NCAA men’s athlete: @pinkmantaray
- Laverne Cox, trans actress, activist, and public figure: @lavernecox
- National Center for Transgender Equality: @transequalitynow
- Gender Spectrum: @gender_spectrum
- Trans Empowerment Project: @transempowermentproject
- Trans Lifeline: @translifeline
3. Reach out to transgender people in your life and show them your support.
- Check in about your loved one’s pronouns and name – their feelings may have changed, and they may wish to be referred to by a different name or pronoun.
- Ask if your loved one wants help legally changing their name or starting a medical transition.
- Ask your loved one how you can best support them in their journey and identity.
4. Educate yourself on transgender-related topics to be more informed and to better understand the community.
Some topics to research include:
- Transgender homelessness
- Transgender employment
- Transgender housing
- Transgender healthcare access
- Transgender mental health
- Nonbinary identities
- Transgender education, students’ rights in school
- Transgender media representation
- Violence against transgender people
- Marginalization of transgender women of color; intersectionality
5. Donate to organizations that are working to advance transgender rights and equality.
- Trans Santa (holiday gifts)
- Trans Lifeline (suicide hotline)
- Sylvia Rivera Law Project (honors the memory of trans woman of color Sylvia Rivera, low-cost legal services for trans community)
- Marsha P. Johnson Institute (honors the memory of famous Black trans woman Marsha P. Johnson and advocates for Black trans people)
- National Center for Transgender Equality
- Transgender Law Center
From all of us at Kaleidoscope, we want our Trans community to know that we see you, we hear you, and we uplift your stories and voices.
Leo Kirkham (They/Them)
Leo Kirkham (they/them) has worked with LGBTQIA+ youth and young adults for 8 years as a youth advocate, camp counselor, and volunteer. They also have experience working with homeless youth, foster youth, and neurodivergent youth. Leo also volunteers as a mentor to community college students who are transferring to university. They are passionate about supporting vulnerable young people and giving them the skills to grow and thrive.