Michigan Trans Assistance Project (MTAP) Washtenaw County is the first partnership between Ann Arbor's trans community and Canterbury House. Our mandate is simple: we want to directly connect trans people with the money they need to live their lives with as little delay as possible.
Our program works like this: trans people living in Washtenaw County, Michigan can apply for up to $200 every month, no questions asked. Since our program's inception in 2019, we have given away over $38,000 to trans people in need, and we're just getting started.
***Canterbury House is a 501c3 and all donations are tax-deductible.***
Who are we?
The Michigan Trans Assistance Project (MTAP for short) is the brainchild of Vidhya Aravind and Carta Monir. As trans women of color living in Ann Arbor, we are acutely aware of the need for improved resources and support for trans people in Washtenaw County. We've partnered with Canterbury House, a 501c3 organization, to operate as a non-profit charity dedicated to connecting trans people with direct assistance. (Although Canterbury House is an Episcopal ministry, MTAP is unaffiliated with any religious group and does not ask for or discriminate based on applicants' religious affiliations.)
Why Washtenaw County?
Although we hope to eventually extend our area of operation to more of Michigan, our current budget means that we need to focus our resources on a single area. Washtenaw County is one of the most densely populated counties in Michigan, and is home to hundreds (if not thousands) of trans people in need of support.
Why this fund?
After attending a trans non-profit fundraiser in 2018, we noticed that people were incredibly willing to give money to lobbying groups and other trans related 501c3’s. This work is incredibly important, and needs to continue! But we were also frustrated knowing so many of our siblings locally were struggling to make rent, afford food, buy clothes, pay for medicine, etc. Direct aid has to exist alongside these larger lobbying projects in order to make sure every trans person is cared for. The hope is that by partnering with Canterbury House we can effectively use tax deductible donations to direct funds towards individual trans folks.
Why this goal?
We’re hoping to raise $60,000 because requests have only gotten more frequent and more urgent during the ongoing pandemic. Having more money to work with would allow us to intervene in emergency situations where a person needed more than $200 at a time, and it would also allow us to seriously consider extending our reach to other counties in Michigan.
Isn’t just giving money away risky?
It’s not any riskier than trusting lobbying groups to take care of every trans community need! Even if direct aid gets misappropriated, the risk is worth the ability for trans folks to feel like they’re not being gatekept from basic levels of comfort, and to feel like they have agency over their own care. Trans people need money, and they need it now.
What can I do?
Donate! Your donations are tax-deductible, which means your employer may also be willing to match your donation. Any money we raise is going directly to trans people in need.
How can I apply for funds through MTAP?
If you're a trans person in Washtenaw County, Michigan, you can apply for up to $200 every month at the Canterbury House website!
Fundraising team (2)
Ann Arbor, MI
Donations are typically 100% tax deductible in the US.