QT Centre: A safe haven for queer folks of Hyderabad

The centre will come up in Habsiguda and aims to give anyone from the LGBTQIA community a space where they can learn, socialize, and seek help.

By Amrutha Kosuru  Published on  5 Jan 2022 8:00 AM GMT
QT Centre: A safe haven for queer folks of Hyderabad

Hyderabad: Rachana Mudraboyina, a trans woman and trans rights activist, came out to her family after graduation. Shortly after, she had to leave home and live on her own.

"As a trans woman, I rarely found decent work despite my education and was forced into sex work. During this time, I had no home, not even temporarily. I had to stay in bus stations and night shelters. Here, too, I was discriminated greatly," she explained.

Now, Rachana along with ten other queer folks are assembling at Queer and Trans Wellness and Support Centre (QT Centre) which will provide temporary housing to queer people. A first-of-its-kind in the city, the QT Centre aims to provide a safe space and basic facilities for people from the LGBTQ community.

The centre, that will come up in Habsiguda, hopes to give anyone from the LGBTQIA community a space where they can learn, play, socialize, and seek help.

"We hope to help as many queer folks as we can," Rachana said.

Tashi Choedup, a trans non-binary person who is part of the project, added, "The QT Centre will provide much-needed emergency support and more, including mental and physical health support. Any queer person can walk into the centre and communicate with everyone."

Tashi said that the queer community often does not receive support from family and society. Hence, the centre will be a place for anyone who requires help. "Each person can stay for up to 40 days. We will also help find long-term stays and employment," Tashi added.

The centre is currently seeking funds and has acquired almost 90% of the required amount. Once fully set up, it will be able to house eight to 10 members at a time. It is set to open its doors in February or March. The project is being housed by Anveshi Research Center for Women's Studies and is being led by a group of people from the queer-trans community.

Rachana pointed out how several people belonging to the transgender community are homeless and poor. "One of the main aims of the centre is to provide a space for everyone to explore their sexuality and gender identities. We will ensure that there are books, computers, and other resources at the centre," she explained.

Tashi said gay, lesbian, transgender, and queer people still face discrimination. "Due to this discrimination, many people do not get the right education or aren't equipped with proper skills. We are also working on tying up with a skill-development institute to help queer people learn necessary skills," she explained.

Any member of the LGBTQ community can also walk into the centre to hang out and spend time there even if they are not staying there. Legal aid will also be provided at the centre.

The QT Centre aims to be a community-led place where no one needs to hide their identities.

To donate for the QT Centre, click here.

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