Striving for an inclusive world: Empowering communities | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 30, 2021 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:54 AM, May 02, 2021

NURTURING DREAMS

Striving for an inclusive world: Empowering communities

TransEnd is a social welfare organisation that empowers the transgender community through education, training, employment, and entrepreneurship. Founded in 2019, the organisation primarily arranges awareness campaigns and programmes, educating people on the gender spectrum. The founder of the organisation, Lamea Tanjin Tanha, a student of Dhaka University, was selected for the Sir Fazle Hasan Abed Ashoka Young Changemakers 2020.

To further uphold the legacy of Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Brac joined social entrepreneurs' global platform Ashoka, and launched this initiative named after the Brac founder to promote young changemakers. Tanha was also selected for the YY Goshti Incubation Programme. Furthermore, TransEnd won UNDP's Digital Khichuri Challenge this year.

When Tanha was a newborn baby, a bunch of transgender people came to her house, and Tanha's mother got to interact with them. "My mother was so welcoming towards them that the leader of the group shared many of her life struggles with her. She always told me to be empathetic towards the transgender community," shared Tanha. "I talked to transgender individuals in different locations and visited their hubs as well. All of them had their individual stories, full of hardships." TransEnd has successfully provided skill- based training to 135 transgender people. "Over 65 transgender people were employed in mainstream fields, as a result of our efforts," Tanha added.

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Celebrating 50 years of Bangladesh's independence, Pathao employed 50 transgender people as their food delivery agents. Under the campaign, 'Freedom for all', TransEnd conducted several surveys, interviews, and field-research projects, to train these people on cycling, digital literacy, and communication. 50 cycles and smartphones were provided to the newly hired agents.

The organisation also conducted an intersex awareness initiative to highlight human rights issues faced by transgender people, through their campaign 'Oshadharon Kichu Shadharon'.

TransEnd's 'Project Nobojibon' provided free handicraft- training to transgender individuals. Their month-long campaign, 'Celebrating Trans Icons in Bangladesh' highlighted notable transgender individuals who are determined to create a better world for their community. "We also helped Shantona apa, an unprivileged transgender woman who was suffering from unemployment during the pandemic, by selling t-shirts, masks, and socks," Tanha shared.

TransEnd's fundraising campaign in response to the pandemic supported over 1,500 unprivileged transgender people. Moving forward, the organisation intends to expand their work on sustainable awareness-building activities.

 

The author is a freelance journalist who likes reading, planning, and scribbling. Write to her at mislammonamee@gmail.com.

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