All LGBTQ+ people should be able to live openly as our whole selves, and to live free from discrimination and violence. We know that to achieve this reality, it will take multiple strategies to get there.
While Pride Foundation’s grants and scholarships support the brilliant and dedicated organizations and leaders working to meet the needs of our communities, our Community Advocacy, Research, and Education (C.A.R.E.) work takes a broader focus to shift culture in communities across the Northwest to make this vision a reality.
Our goal through this work is to create a Northwest region that is inhospitable to homophobia, transphobia, racism, misogyny and all other forms of harm directed at LGBTQ+ communities. Together, we can transform our culture so that we can all find safety and belonging in our home communities, especially those most often systematically pushed to the margins or at risk of discrimination and harm like Black and Indigenous trans femmes.
What is C.A.R.E.?
We drive change alongside and on behalf of community through advocating for the breadth and depth of LGBTQ+ community needs to those best able to impact change. These advocacy efforts range widely—from local, state-based coalition work against anti-LGBTQ+ legislation, to timely advocacy grants to organizations protecting our communities’ rights on the ground. What all these efforts have in common is that they focus on giving our communities exactly what they need from Pride Foundation.
We conduct research to develop messaging that is focused on building narratives that shift culture to be more inclusive of the breadth of LGBTQ+ people, specifically focused on BIPOC trans and non-binary people and communities. Using a partnership approach to research, we engage community members and organizations in all aspects of the research, with equity at the center of the process—ensuring all partners contribute expertise and share in decision-making and ownership.
Decades of movement work has taught us that sharing our stories is one of the most powerful ways to shift culture. As part of a community-driven effort, we collect, archive, and share stories of BIPOC trans and nonbinary experiences
Then, through our research work, we curate compelling messages based on these stories, and build narratives that are reflective of the full breadth and depth of our communities. Working with our community partners, we share these messages and stories widely across communities in the Northwest and nationally. Together, we’re helping to shift narratives about LGBTQ+ people, so that we are more welcomed, included, and accepted.
How We Work
This work took root in 2016 when Pride Foundation was invited to join a community coalition called TRANSform WA. This coalition led the Washington State public education campaign to fight back against legislation that was attacking trans and non-binary communities (aka the notorious ‘bathroom bills’). Since then, this work has evolved into a region-wide, community-driven effort that is sustained by Pride Foundation in partnership with the Village Council—a committee of BIPOC trans and non-binary community members from across the Northwest. We are indebted to council member Ganesha Gold Buffalo for the idea of a Village Council, which began taking shape in 2020. This formation will evolve later in 2022, so please stay tuned for opportunities to join!
The Village Council works to center and elevate trans and nonbinary people in our C.A.R.E. work, which we collectively refer to as TRANSform Culture. They also guide the broader advocacy, research, and education components of this program. Village Council members serve rotating terms, are compensated for their time, and are supported as change makers through additional resources such as professional development funds.
Current Village Council Members:
- Alaska: MoHagani Magnetek (she/her)
- Idaho: Aodhàn Crawford (he/him)
- Oregon: Úmi Vera (She/her)
- Montana: Dandilion (they/them)
- Washington: Amanda Saenz (she/her), Ellison Jennings (she/her), Hiram Calf-Looking, Jesse Guecha (he/him), Lourdez Velasco (they/them), Mattie Mooney (they/them), Michael Zaki (he/him), Raven Two Feathers (he/him), Siggy Frank (they/them), Tepatasi Vaina (she/her)
- At Large: Ganesha Gold Buffalo (she/her) (feel free to contact Ganesha as an organizational consultant!)
We are actively recruiting storytellers who are BIPOC intersex, nonbinary, transgender, Two-Spirit, and non-cisgender. This is a paid opportunity to take part in our work to TRANSform Culture across the Northwest. Please reach out to Director of C.A.R.E., José Romero (they/them), if you’re interested in sharing your story!
Past Project Spotlight: Building Empathy Through Virtual Reality
In recent years, TRANSform Culture collaborated on the project, Authentically Us, a series of short documentary films that tell the stories of trans people in our region using 360˚ filmmaking and Virtual Reality. The hope with this project was to create the opportunity for people to see, hear, and in some sense feel the realities of the lived experience of community members in order to build empathy and a stronger sense of connection to our shared humanity.
In partnership with filmmaker Jesse Ayala Jr. of Fovrth Studio, these Virtual Reality (VR) films are part of Oculus’s VR for Good Creators Lab. This recently-established project pairs filmmakers and nonprofits to make great VR in the name of social good.
In winter 2018, we were thrilled to announce that one of these films, Authentically Us: We’re Still Here, was named an official selection at South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Festival, and another, Authentically Us: She Flies By Her Own Wings, was named an official selection at Tribeca and Cannes Film Festivals. You can experience these films and many others on the TRANSform Washington Facebook page.