This year marks our 40th Anniversary! To celebrate this milestone we present – VOICES – a monthly series highlighting direct reflections from participants on our exchange programs.
February’s spotlight centers on the graceful Vihaan Peethambar, a leading advocate for transgender rights in India and a recent #ivlp participant. We spoke to Vihaan at the 2019 Pride World Forum, an annual collaboration between SDDC and San Diego Pride that included time for peer mentoring between San Diego LGBTQ youth and young professionals, and visiting human rights leaders. Vihaan shared his impressions from this mentorship opportunity while reflecting on how travel continues to expand him.
“The mentorship conversations reminded me that the journey of queer beings are not very different from each other no matter where we come from. For eg: The pressures of toxic masculinity faced by transmen is a universal problem and makes it all the more crucial that transmen steer the course to redefine the meaning of masculinity in a positive manner.
What I love about traveling and meeting new people is that it allows me to get out of my comfort zone, experience new cultures and hear different opinions & perspectives. It makes you more open-minded and less ignorant of the world around you. The more I travel and interact with strangers the more I realize I have nothing to fear and everything to gain by opening up and sharing a moment of my life freely.”
VOICES is a monthly series highlighting direct reflections from participants on our exchange programs, to celebrate SDDC’s 40th anniversary in 2019