November 15, 2021


NEW YORK, NY – Today, GLAAD and Gilead Sciences’ TRANScend® Community Impact Fund announced a video conversation with Stasha Sanchez, who was crowned Miss Continental 2018, to recognize Transgender Awareness Week (November 13 – 19), when people across the country help raise awareness about Transgender people and address issues members of the community face.

The video conversation, posting Wednesday on GLAAD's social channels, will also feature grantees and comes as TRANScend enters its second round of funding, with 16 organizations across 10 states in the United States receiving $4.7 million to elevate best practices and community-led solutions that improve the safety, health and wellness of the Transgender community. 

TRANScend grantees Fundación Latinoamericana De Acción Social Inc., Trans Women In Need Of Services Inc., and Baltimore Safe Haven will engage in the video conversation with Stasha Sanchez to discuss their advocacy and commemorate Transgender Day of Remembrance, which memorializes trans people killed by violence.

Launched in 2019 under the advisement of experts and community advocates from Transgender advocacy and healthcare organizations, Gilead’s TRANScend fund has awarded more than $9.2 million in grants to 26 community organizations. The program has a three-pronged approach to directly and intentionally address health disparities among the Transgender community: grantmaking, capacity building and direct service programs.

“We’re committed to ensuring that members of the Transgender community and Trans-led organizations are heard and supported,” said Sean Coleman, the Executive Director of Destination Tomorrow. “As the grantmaking partner of Gilead’s TRANScend program, we will continue to have the opportunity to directly support Trans-led organizations with the hope that the most vulnerable members of the Transgender community are empowered to live long, healthy and fulfilling lives.”

In its second round of funding, Destination Tomorrow will serve as a grantmaking partner, building on its knowledge, expertise and experience in both serving the Transgender population and working with and funding Trans-led organizations and community members. Destination Tomorrow estimates that they’ll be able to successfully support and fund nearly 25 organizations over the next two years.

“Transgender Awareness Week is an incredibly important time to share stories and experiences, and take action around the issues of prejudice, discrimination, and violence that affect the Transgender community disproportionately,” said Serena Sonoma, Communications Coordinator and Media Lead for the US South at GLAAD. “This week, we want to shine a spotlight on the TRANScend program, which plays a crucial role uplifting the work of the organizations working tirelessly to provide essential services and advocacy for the Transgender community.”

With Transgender people being over four times more likely than cisgender people to be victims of violent crime, tackling the systemic legal and societal barriers is paramount to ending the stigma, marginalization and discrimination that too often leads to violence against the transgender community. Additionally, the CDC surveyed transgender women living in seven major U.S. cities and found that 42.2% were infected with HIV with Black transgender women impacted at a higher rate of 61.9%. This glaring public health disparity is just one example of HIV/AIDS still persisting in our society as an urgent crisis, despite a lack of media coverage on the topic.

“Gilead is proud to support these Trans-led community-based organizations who are working on behalf of the Transgender Community, which is disproportionately affected by societal and social structures that exacerbate the HIV epidemic," said Brett Pletcher, Executive Vice President, Corporate Affairs and General Counsel, Gilead Sciences. “We are proud to support organizations that provide vital services for the Transgender community.”

For more information on the Gilead TRANScend Community Impact Fund, visit

A full list of organizations receiving grants this year is as follows: 

Destination Tomorrow Inc. in Bronx, NY

Transgender Strategy Center in Richmond, CA

Translatina Network Inc. in New York, NY

Damien Center Inc. in Indianapolis, IN

Gender Benders in Piedmont, SC

Transgender Legal Defense And Education Fund, Inc. (TLDEF) in New York, NY

Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico in Albuquerque, NM

United Territories of Pacific Islanders Alliance - UTOPIA Washington in Kent, WA

Triumphant 2Gether (T2) in Kissimmee, FL

Los Angeles LGBT Center in Los Angeles, CA

Nationz Foundation Inc. in Richmond, VA

Arianna Center. in Miami, FL

Fundación Latinoamericana De Acción Social Inc. in Houston, TX

Transinclusive Group Inc. in Pembroke Pines, FL

Baltimore Safe Haven in Baltimore, MD

Gender Health Center in Sacramento, CA