top of page
  • Oliver Whitney

Become Santa for Trans Youth and Other Ways to Support Trans Folks This Holiday Season.

By Oliver Whitney

(Courtesy of Getty Images)

The holiday season is a time for giving. Maybe you have an annual tradition of dropping off winter clothing at a local coat drive, donating to a food bank, or sending some extra cash to an organization or two. This year, why not also help out trans folks in need. If you’re looking for ways you can directly support the trans community this holiday season, especially as more and more anti-trans bills threaten the livelihood and safety of trans youth, there’s a variety of amazing ways to do so, and one is TransSanta.

TransSanta is one of the coolest and most heartwarming annual campaigns you may not have heard of. It’s a mutual aid social media campaign that helps send gifts to trans youth who are unhoused, in foster care, or without vital support. Launched in 2020 by Pose star Indya Moore, Kyle Lasky, and ACLU Deputy Director and lawyer Chase Strangio, TransSanta quickly grew from a small Instagram account into a viral campaign.

Every year, TransSanta asks trans folks who are 24 years old or younger to apply by sending in a letter sharing a little bit about themselves and what they’d need or like as gifts. Then through the TransSanta Instagram account or website, anyone can choose who they’d like to buy a gift for and send it anonymously through an Amazon registry. You literally get to become Santa for young trans folks — what’s more beautiful than that?

Scrolling through the submissions, you’ll find handwritten letters, digital letters with artwork, selfies, and more. Reading through these alone is a moving experience, and a way to really understand what young trans people in this country are going through. Folks share personal details about struggles with being unhoused, unsupportive family situations, and those with supportive parents who can’t afford to buy them gifts or necessary items like clothing or school supplies. Others are seeking financial support for gender affirming-surgeries and costly legal name changes.

In addition to giving gifts through a registry, you can also directly support TransSanta through tax-deductible donations to ensure they’re able to continue running each year. In their latest video, TransSanta’s Kyle Lasky shares that the org isn’t really about Christmas, but “about deepening the connection that trans youth feel with their larger community, and to their own lives.”

If you have the funds to support trans folks even more, there’s plenty of other ways to give. For the Gworls is a Black, trans-led mutual aid collective that raises money to help Black trans folks pay their rent and pay for gender-affirming surgeries and other medical expenses. Black trans folks disproportionately experience violence and discrimination — especially in the areas of housing and employment — so collectives like For the Gworls are absolutely vital to support for those who have the means. The collective just launched their 2023 Winter Fund to redistribute funds to Black trans people in need, aiming to raise $400,000 by the end of the year to provide money for rental assistance and hormone replacement therapy, as well as funding for the For the Gworls’ Black trans staff.

If you’re looking for a local organization to support the trans community in your state, check out them’s excellent guide of 100 organizations fighting for trans and LGBTQ+ justice. Forbes also has a great list of 20 trans, non-binary, and gender non-conforming POC-led organizations to donate to. If you’re growing anxious about the state of anti-trans legislation in the U.S. and want to support an independent trans journalist who’s been at the center of the reporting this year, subscribe and donate to Erin Reed’s substack. And if you’re looking to support a trans-owned business and give a loved one a cool T-shirt or beautiful art print, check out Transfigure Print Co; they make the popular (and quick-to-sell-out) “Protect Trans Youth” shirt design.

There’s endless ways to support the trans community this holiday season, and every day of the year. And don’t forget — on top of financial support, the simplest thing is calling or texting a trans person in your life over the holidays, an especially lonely and difficult time, and reminding them that they’re not alone.

Your donations help Be the Transformational Change Fund, and continue to provide support to our community. Will you donate today?

22 views0 comments


bottom of page