The International Trans Fund (ITF) is seeking applications from committed activists to be members of its Grant Making Panel (GMP). The deadline for submitting your application is January 17, 2022.
Applications can be submitted in either English or Spanish, the two official working languages of the ITF.
Trans groups across the globe remain severely under-resourced and operate with limited or no budgets. The State of Trans Organizing, a survey of 455 trans organizations conducted in 2016 by AJWS (American Jewish World Service), GATE (Global Action for Trans Equality) and Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, found that two out of five trans groups had zero external funding and only 40% received foundation funding. 56% of trans organizations operated on a budget of less than USD$10,000 yearly and over three-quarters (78%) had annual budgets of less than USD$50,000. To address this disparity, a group of international trans activists and donors came together to create the International Trans Fund (ITF).
The ITF is a participatory grantmaking fund made up of trans activists and supporting donors. The ITF aims to increase the capacity of the trans movement to self-organize and advocate for trans people’s rights, self-determination, and wellbeing.
The purpose of the fund is to:
- To develop and sustain a mechanism to support trans-led groups of different sizes working on a range of issues at the international, regional, country and local levels, with emphasis on smaller groups with limited resources.
- To educate our peers in the philanthropic community on trans issues and influence other funders and strategic allies in trans related commitments and strategies.
- To increase and enhance access to resources to support trans movements by increasing financial resources dedicated to trans-led organizations and groups; providing access to non-financial resources for trans organizations, such as skills building, organizational strengthening, leadership development and activist support; and improving advocacy in philanthropy to increase access to new donors.
What does “trans” mean to the ITF?
The ITF understands trans as a political term that defines the communities of people that we work with. We use trans to define people whose gender identity or expression differs from their gender assigned at birth. Some of these people identify and present themselves as male or female; others identify with a non-binary gender category. These identities or expressions include trans women, trans men, fa’afafine, leiti, fakafifine, akava’ine, mahu, vakasalewalewa, palopa, Sistergirls, Brotherboys, whakawahine, tangata ira tane, muxhe, omeguid, travesti, two spirit, hijra, bandhu, mangalamukhi, kinnar, thirunangai, thirunambi, khwaja sira, meti, katoey, waria, mak nyah, kua xing nan, trans laki-laki, transpinay, transpinoy, kwaa-sing- bit, and transgender, transsexual, genderqueer, gender non-binary, gender diverse, gender non-conforming, and agender people – to name just a few.
As part of the ITF’s commitment to self-determination and decolonizing bodily oppressions, we are permanently committed and open to recognizing gender identities that emerge and that our communities claim within their socio-political contexts. These arise from the ongoing work of resistance and liberation that involves both the remembering and reimagining of gender identities and expressions. The ITF does not privilege any one gender identity or expression over another, including those communities who do not have specific terms to describe who they are.
The ITF is a participatory grantmaking fund and we take an activist-led approach that engages trans people in our grantmaking process. This means that trans people are actively involved at every stage, from determining funding priorities to reviewing applications and making decisions about which groups get funded. All eligible applications that are submitted to the ITF are reviewed by our GMP.
Roles and Responsibilities of the GMP
The role of the GMP is to review grant proposals submitted to the ITF and make decisions on these grant applications in line with ITF’s priorities and principles.
GMP members have the following responsibilities:
- Participate in online GMP training.
- Attend one annual in-person meeting (the meeting location changes each year) or virtual meeting which takes approximately 6 days
- Take active part in online discussions, e-mail exchanges, and at least 75% of online meetings.
- Lead and conduct grantmaking processes, including:
- Encourage trans communities to apply for funding.
- Review applications for funding.
- Make collective decisions on funding proposals (decisions of the GMP are final pending ratification from the Steering Committee).
- Recommend grantmaking priorities and provide input on ITF strategy as relevant.
- Strictly adhere to ITF’s confidentiality and conflict of interest policies in and outside of the ITF at all times.
- Elect GMP Co-Chairs for each two-year cycle.
- In order to fulfill this position, GMP members must be able to commit to the following:
- Participate in mandatory online training (3 hours) each year.
- Review 30-50 applications (including scoring and providing feedback) over 6 weeks in each annual grantmaking cycle (approximately 50 hours total each year).
- Attend and actively participate in either an in-person meeting or virtual meeting each year (6 days).
Qualification of the candidates
- Identify as trans.
- Have at least 5 years of direct involvement with trans activism at the regional and/or international level.
- Be recognised by other trans activists in their region as a trans community activist.
- Be able to communicate and write in at least one of the ITF’s working languages (English or Spanish).
- Be able and willing to work in a diverse environment that includes activists and donors.
- Hold a passport allowing them to travel internationally to attend GMP meetings.
- Have a strong commitment to fulfill tasks and deadlines.
Optional qualifications: It would be desirable for candidates to:
- Be able to communicate and write in one of the other application languages (French, Russian or Chinese).
- Have direct experience managing and reporting on grants for trans work.
Conflict of Interest
GMP members or their family members cannot be significantly involved in any group that has applied or will apply for funding from the ITF. GMP members may not benefit financially from the grants assessed or existing ITF grants.
GMP members will be appointed by the Steering Committee for a two-year term.
GMP members will receive a remuneration of USD$1,000 per one-year grant cycle. Members also receive travel expenses, including per diem, to attend ITF meetings.
The Steering Committee will select seven (7) activists to serve as GMP members. When selecting candidates, every effort will be made to ensure diversity across regions, gender identities and expressions, and representation from further marginalized groups within trans communities.
Please submit your CV and cover letter to [email protected] by January 17, 2022.