Fourteen year old transgender Asher needs a change. He needs a nurturing accepting educational environment and believes that it awaits him at the Arthur Morgan School in the Blue Ridge Mountains. He needs us, his family now especially since he has no father in his life.
All I know about this school is what Asher tells us and I believe him, and I know how magical those mountains and people are from personal experience. When I was growing up I needed a different environment just as Asher does now and I found that by hiking the blue trail thru those mountains, summer and winter spring and fall, this city kid made the trip south. Sometimes I was accompanied and guided by the most fearless mountain people I have ever meet, sometimes alone I found the challenges I craved and the satisfaction of doing what no one thought I could, on the Blue Ridge.
Source: indiegogo.com Hi! I'm Asher, I'm fourteen, and I'm transgender. I'm raising money to get to this really awesome Quaker boarding school in North Carolina.
If you wanna learn more about me and my desires for education, then please keep reading...
Being fourteen isn't easy, not for anyone. Puberty, middle school, and all that crazy stuff. For trans kids like me, it's even more complicated. At two, I found this out about myself. This has never been easy at my other schools, but luckily, my mom has been very supportive and has learned a lot about trans issues over the years. I am so grateful for this. If I hadn't been raised around a bunch of queers, or if my mom was trans-phobic, I honestly don't know where I would be. I have felt very affirmed and accepted by a lot of adults in my life, and this has helped me so much.
The school I currently go to is not a great fit for me. I think they try to be good allies to me, but they don't know much about trans stuff, and I don't feel safe coming out as trans when most of the teachers and staff are not so prepared to support me. This makes it much harder for me to make good, trusting friendships with kids at school, so I wind up feeling pretty isolated, and this causes more stress and loneliness and frustration in my life. Its been a pretty depressing year so far.
As I've been looking for a way to create a better future for myself, I found this place called Arthur Morgan, a small boarding school in the Blue Ridge Mountains. I got to go visit a couple months ago and it was everything I hoped for and more! Surrounded by beautiful mountains and woods, we sang songs every morning, there were cows and chickens and sheep, the other kids were super mature and fun, the classes were very small, and INTERESTING! They served great homemade snacks between classes. For PE, we hiked in the woods and played fun, athletic games. It felt really good to me there, surrounded by mountains, forests, and lots of animals. I applied and they accepted me... YAY! Although the school has never had an out trans student before, they're very excited about welcoming me to the community. The staff is doing workshops to learn how to be good allies for me, and any other trans kids they get in the future. I really feel like this sort of outdoor education within a small community will bring out the best in me, and help me build a solid foundation for the rest of my life.
I'm seriously wanting to go to this seriously awesome school, and it's seriously expensive. Well, not so bad for a boarding school... but its still a whopping $25,000! I'm getting about a 7,000 dollars scholarship from the school, and my mom is pitching in at least five thousand. Now all that's left is ONLY thirteen thousand dollars! Not so bad, right? Well YES, I'm dreamin' big here, but why not? Which is why I'm needing LOTS of SUPPORT from LOTS of PEOPLE! AND, I'm offering some SWEET perks (check 'em out>>>)
Even if you can't afford to donate to my campaign, you can still help! You can SPREAD THE WORD by forwarding this to your friends, POSTING IT TO YOUR FB WALL, telling people you work with, announcing it at potlucks, and whatever else.
Any help you can offer me will make a huge difference in my life. These are important years, for me and the whole world. Going to middle school in a healthy environment surrounded by people who accept me for who I am will not only give me a better life next year, but will also influence who I become in the world. Thanks for reading this, and I totally appreciate whatever you feel inspired to contribute.
That's it folks!
Herbst Theater, San Francisco May 25 2012. Three trangender icons took the stage to perform the Vagina Monologues.
Cecilia Chung a longtime trans advocate is currently a Health Commissioner in San Francisco where she is the first trans woman appointed to the position by Mayor Ed Lee.
Tita Aida Aids/HIV activist.
Theresa Sparks Executive Director, San Francisco Human Rights Commission.