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After website, transgender community gets helpline in Mumbai

The helpline service called ‘transgenie’ will help users find doctors, counsellors and specialists for medical help.

mumbai Updated: Mar 27, 2018 10:23 IST
Yesha Kotak
Yesha Kotak
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,transgender,Helpline
The website provides legal and medical aide to people of the community across the country(HT FILE)

With an aim to provide an information and support platform for transgenders, six members of the community recently launched a helpline in Mumbai .

Sophie Dawud, 24, and her five friends, had started a website ‘transgenderindia.com’ two years back in Bengaluru. Today, the site provides legal and medical aide to people of the community across the country.

“Since our community is ignored, people don’t really know where to go and whom to approach, which is why a lot of them do not even come out in the open. People are scared totalk about transgenders, hence, through this website, we are providing the first online platform that could cater to the needs of transgender community,” said Dawud.

Dawud added that she observed that in remote areas transgenders struggled to get the right information, which is why they launched a helpline service called ‘transgenie’ through which users could find doctors, counsellors and specialists for medical help.

Members of transgender community seeking help can call on: 7338321413

The website has content sourced from across the country by people within the community and contains archives and anecdotes shared by other transgendered persons. It also offers guidelines for those who would want to perform a sex change operation, and also a guide for getting the gender changed in their legal documents.

Dawud recently spoke about the website and the helpline at Dharavi, so that more people could avail the service.

Speaking about the stereotype that the society has towards the community, Dawud said that the community was revered in the pre-colonial era. “We share the contact so that people can call us directly to seek help, but even then there are men who call us and ask for sex. It is unfortunate, that some people still have this kind of mentality,” Dawud said.

Speaking about the initiative, Harrish Iyer, LGBTQ activist, said that such platforms were necessary source of information. “There are some doctors who do not even know who transgenders are, which is why a focused source of information is absolutely important because the community doesn’t really know whom to approach. Also, the way things work in our society, transgenders require friendly psychiatrists and doctors,” Iyer said.

First Published: Mar 27, 2018 10:23 IST