Trans Kids – Supporting trans and gender questioning children under 11

May 18th, 2015 by

Trans Kids – Allsorts Youth Project

In October 2014, we set up a pilot scheme for a Trans Kids group to run once a month. The group caters for primary age children who are trans or questioning their gender identity. Trans Kids was set up in response to a growing number of young children expressing that they do not identify with their assigned sex, and through this were experiencing isolation, judgement and fear. We initially started with interest from a few parents and a small group of two or three children. It is now six months down the line and we have seven children under 11 who attend on a regular basis, some travelling from outside of Sussex to access the group. The pilot has now turned into a core group that children enjoy accessing and look forward to.

As more and more stories of trans children enter the media and are in the public eye, it is ever more vital for us to be providing support to this age group. The group is proving to be invaluable for the children who access it, in addition to giving parents of young trans/gender questioning children a space to meet.

By giving trans/gender questioning children a safe environment to access, free of judgement or assumptions, we hope that they will flourish in their identities, whether they transition or not. The group allows children who attend to meet other children who feel similar to themselves, and make friendships and connections that are not easily accessible in other spaces. We do various activities such as arts and crafts, light touch wellbeing activities and gardening, whilst giving them a space to talk about their gender if they want to. Some children don’t even feel they need to mention it, but just being in a space that is accepting of their gender (or lack of) is all they need.

In addition to the group, Allsorts provides 121 support for children if they would like to talk more in depth about their gender with a trans worker. Whilst some of the children we see are very clear that their gender is different than their sex assigned at birth, others feel unsure or unclear about what their gender is. 121 support allows them to explore their feelings by talking, drawing, writing or playing.

Our hope is that Trans Kids will continue to progress and develop over time, offering space for children to just be themselves and feel confident that what they are, who they and who they may become is okay.

If you think your child may interested in coming along to Trans Kids, please contact Ryan on 01273 721211 or email ryangingell@allsortsyouth.org.uk

Allsorts Youth Project supports and empowers lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans young people to take a lead in raising awareness of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia and challenge prejudice and discrimination in all areas of young people’s lives.