Thank you for your interest in supporting MaineTransNet. We are proud to offer direct financial support to transgender people across Maine in the form of our name change fund. Our fund is named in memorial of a much beloved member of our community, Elise Beaudoin, and her mother, Kim, a loudly supportive ally, both of whom we lost, tragically, in the fall of 2017. Elise was known throughout the community as a committed friend, who did everything she could to help other transgender people to be themselves. Following her daughter's death, Kim became an outspoken ally and present member of the MaineTransNet family, acting as a surrogate for many young trans people without loving families. We feel this project is an appropriate way to honor the legacies of both these women, as these funds will allow many transgender people in Maine to validate that core part of who they are: their name. Donations for the original fund come in part from Elise and Kim's memorial gifts, as well as from the Trans Justice Funding Project.
Ongoing support relies upon individual donations made here. The average name change in Maine costs over $80 in court fees. With the addition of certified mail required to send name change forms and checks, as well as staff labor, each name change processed costs MaineTransNet $100.
Name changes provide much needed validation for many in the transgender community. However, legal recognition of who you are offers so much more than validation. It also offers safety. Mismatched identity information is a common way for trans people to be outed. Whether it's being carded at a bar, handing over a debit card with an old name on it, submitting information to colleges, or even trying to change your name on Facebook. Having your legal name match your chosen name prevents many of these situations, and makes the day to day reality of being a trans person in this world that much safer.
Thank you for your support.