Brazil sees more killings of transgender and transsexual persons than any country on earth. Average life expectancy for these persons is thirty-five years, and according to recent studies, that figure has fallen to twenty-seven years. The vulnerability of trans persons begins at home: thirteen years is the average age at which trans persons are disowned, expelled from their homes, and forced to halt their educations. Due to this and other factors, they are fourteen times more likely to be victims of homicide. Eighty-five percent of trans homicides are cruel and unusual and fifty-six percent happen in public. With respect to employment, ninety percent of trans persons engage in sex labor; six percent work odd jobs or are underemployed; and merely four percent have stable employment in a typical career path. Prejudice, violence, and lack of education form a vicious cycle that feeds itself and retrogresses. In this project, we present an alternative to break the cycle, offering professional training to trans persons to help ensure their individual autonomy. The project tends to the greatest victims of violence among LGBT+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) persons and our project aims to assist participants in reaching financial autonomy, one factor with a large impact on vulnerability.
Transfiguration Liturgical Vestments and Paraments is a joint initiative of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, and Capacitrans.
St. Luke’s has been in the forefront of social inclusion in the Anglican Diocese of Rio de Janeiro, Igreja Episcopal Anglicana do Brasil. In the 1960s, it supported several missions among impoverished residents of favelas (slums) in its neighborhood. It planted Christ the King in Cidade de Deus and St. Mary’s and St Martha’s in Morro Dona Marta. In the last few decades, it has also embraced the LGBTI population and has become a fully inclusive, racially integrated parish.
Capacitrans is a project to equip vulnerable trans persons with professional skills. It has been supported by a myriad of NGOs and individuals, such as Itaú Mais Diversidade – a diversity initiative of Itaú, a large Brazilian corporate bank, and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Copacabana. Currently, the following courses are offered: Entrepreneurship for Trans, Clothing Production and Style for LGB and Vulnerable Women and Trans Persons, Esthetics (Makeup and Hair Styling) for Trans Persons.