Finn Greig’s own experiences growing up in London inspired him to found a camping trip for trans young people – some of whom credit it with saving their lives…
‘Growing up trans in north London had its challenges. I knew I was a boy when I was really little, but everybody told me that I wasn’t. One of my earliest memories is my sister’s second birthday. I was four and I refused to wear a dress at first, but my grandma forced my mum to make me wear one. I ended up squelching birthday cake all over it in protest!
When I started secondary school in Dalston, I remember being very aware of my gender: of being a masculine young woman. A lot of girls bullied me for wearing trousers. My mum moved me to a girls’ school in Camden, which I loved as it was non-uniform. I made a lot of friends there, but even so, there wasn’t one person I could really talk to about trans issues. It just wasn’t well understood then, and I felt like I was doing everything on my own. My parents were great, but I didn’t feel like I could necessarily speak to them.
All of that was a big factor in why I became a youth worker. I didn’t want kids having to go through the same thing I did. Working with young people, I became more aware of the need for exclusive spaces for trans youth. I was part of co-founding Gendered Intelligence in 2008, to support trans young people aged eight to 25 across England, and in 2010 I started the Gendered Intelligence camping trip. Read more via Time Out