March is Women’s Month, and today’s women transcend to break free from the past. Leading this clarion call for women to break free include Miss World 2013 Megan Young and Miss Trans Global 2020 Mela Habijan.
Together with the community volunteers, Megan and Mela headline Transcend by LoveYourself’s women empowerment segment of its latest campaign, #BreakFreePH. This campaign hopes to inspire ciswomen and transgender people to fight off the stigma surrounding sexual health and ensure their holistic well-being. Women deserve to be taken care of and respected even for their sexual health choices.
Filipinos should also continually welcome newer perspectives and create more inclusive actions for all genders. Megan and Mela, whose purposes are beyond their beauty and title, aim to enable voiceless women to break free from any form of abuse, discrimination, and violence.
In the #BreakFreePH campaign video (http://bit.ly/MeganBreakFreePH), Megan emphasized that society is never just a man’s world and that empowered women are no different. As women of the 21st century, “We are not limited by our sex and physical built,” Megan stressed.
Mela, a woman of trans experience, underscored that trans women are valid and refuse to be seen differently. She mentioned that transgender people can fulfill roles regardless of gender, such as being parents, having a business, or being in anything they choose to pursue.
Mela highlighted that trans people definitely exist as an essential part of the country’s developing society. “We are not limited by our gender transition,” she firmly said on another #BreakFreePH campaign video (http://bit.ly/MelaBreakFreePH).
Lastly, the #BreakFreePH also discussed gender-related socio-political issues concerning all women like physical abuse, verbal assault, rape, hate crimes, psychological violence, and killings.
Aside from women empowerment, the #BreakFreePH campaign has three more pillars: sexual health, gender-affirming hormone therapy, and women and trans health services under Victoria by LoveYourself community center.
HIV advocate Janlee Dungca, Cebuana vlogger Alem Garcia and trans man Nick Escalderon will also take part in the campaign to promote the holistic well-being of trans people, especially for their gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT) and health-related issues about transitioning.
Transcend by LoveYourself was established in 2020 to address the lack of services catered for trans health issues such as biomedical transitioning and ciswomen’s sexual concerns. It was finally made into fruition in view of expanding the services offered in the country’s first community-led transgender health center called Victoria by LoveYourself. This community center offers free gender-sensitive HIV testing and transition counseling and consultation services, among others.