Trans Awareness Month I was born in a Batey in the southern Dominican Republic. A Batey is a settlement surrounding a sugarcane mill, where cane harvesters’ families experience very rudimentary conditions. I always felt different and did not belong to the Batey community. When I was 12 years old, my mother kicked me out because she said the house was not big enough for “two women.” I ended up living in the streets of Santo Domingo as a transgender sex worker, today I am Nairobi Castillo, Executive Director of COTRAVETD, an organization of Transgender Sex Workers that takes care of transgender women and girls who participate in sex work throughout the country. We do outreach and advocacy activities to prevent HIV, human rights abuses, and gender violence directed at transgender women, very often I meet someone like me, who comes to the capital from a distant district without knowing anyone. It reminds me of where I come from and who I have become, and that gives me the will to continue doing what I do in COTRAVETD. #transawarenessmonth

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