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Dr Michelle Telfer and Georgie Stone
The Story So Far
In 2007, Georgie Stone, a 7 year old transgender girl and her family desperately searched for assistance to help them with the difficulties of being, raising and supporting a transgender child. At that time help and information were scarce but they found it at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne. Georgie has been attending the RCH Gender Service for over ten years now and she and her family credit the team of specialist doctors and nurses with saving her life and helping her flourish into the happy, healthy high achieving person she is today. The lives of transgender and gender diverse children can be very challenging at times, with high levels of discrimination and misinformation about their experience impacting on their wellbeing and causing great distress. The RCH Gender Service for many families and young people is a lifeline.
In 2012 Georgie’s mother Rebekah Robertson founded Transcend which was the first parent led peer support network for families of transgender children in Australia. Transcend offers families attending the RCH Gender Service the opportunity to meet others going through the same challenges, as well as advocating for trans and gender diverse children, supporting the good work of the Gender Service and providing information nationally via their website and community connections. Transcend’s support for the RCH Gender Service has been formalised by becoming an RCH Auxiliary. Transcend Auxiliary is tremendously excited to be able to give back by fundraising and targeting proceeds to the RCH Gender Service, particularly as the service has given our children and our families so much.
What Transcend’s Support Will Do
Being trans or gender diverse is an example of natural human diversity and is now increasingly being seen as having a biological basis. Research in this field of medicine is still quite new and limited and more information is required to ensure children and adolescents are receiving the best care possible based on the latest peer reviewed scientific studies. Transcend is focusing its fundraising efforts on supporting the RCH Gender Service to achieve a solid funding base so it can further develop and drive research on the long term effects of medical interventions accessed by children within the service. Evidence created through this scientific research will facilitate the Gender Service in continuing to be a world class service which provides evidence based treatment for trans and gender diverse children. Evidence gained through this research over many years will also help to counter misinformation and therefore improve the health and wellbeing of transgender children and adolescents by removing stigma and discrimination.
President: Rebekah Robertson Secretary: Naomi McNamara Treasurer: Belinda James RCH Foundation Auxiliaries You can also donate directly to the RCH Gender Service or start your own fundraising campaign here.
Image credit: Jackie Cohen