Aria Sa’id, Kween Culture Initiative, San Francisco, CA, USA

The grant was our first acknowledgement from an institution, which is important for public service projects…The grant, to be completely honest, gave me a reinvigoration of hope in this effort when I had sort of lost it. Being a transgender woman anywhere in the world is a pretty difficult journey. Having ideas and perseverance to do them when institutions with resources don’t take your efforts seriously- as a Black trans woman- can make you want to throw in the towel. At times, I asked myself, ‘Why am I committed to this? I have a job, so why am I taking on additional work when I don’t need to be?’ However, I’ve just been completely married to the idea that trans women of color- in particular black transgender women, are not empowered in ways that we could be. Receiving the Pollination Project grant reinvigorated my commitment to the vision, and gave me a stronger trajectory to generate and create ideas and newer ways of thinking about this effort to be impactful.

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