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Meet Julia


Julia's story

Annual Trans Surgery Fund recipient

Julia (she/her) is a 41-year-old trans woman from California seeking vocal chord surgery. She is a full-time parent to a 9 year old son. "I am on every type of public assistance you can think of," Julia shares. "I am on Cash Aid, CalFresh, Medi-Cal , and section 8 housing. Being on a fixed income, having to support my son, no savings of any kind has meant that gender-affirming care is simply out of reach for me."

After her insurance denied coverage, Julia tried applying for Care Credit, but that too was denied.

"I came out later on in life, due to the time period and environment that I was raised in. It wasn't until after my divorce of12 years of marriage, getting full custody of my son, that I even thought it was possible to be my true authentic self," Julia shares. She is currently a full-time student at her local community college and hopes to work with her LGBTQIA2+ community in the future.

Julia's timeline

  • Award Granted

    February 15, 2024

    Julia was granted a Surgery Fund Award!
  • Care Received

    March 20, 2024

    Julia had surgery with Dr. Yung!

Grant details

$10,825 towards gender-affirming care.

TikTok-a-Thon grantee

About Vocal Chord Surgery

On average, it costs $9,000+ for Julia's care.

What is it?

Vocal chord surgery is a procedure that modifies the pitch and characteristics of the voice to achieve a more feminine or a more masculine outcome. There are various surgical techniques that may be used to change the length of the vocal chords and structures in the larynx.

What is life like for a person who needs this care?

For trans people who experience dysphoria around their voice, they may feel discomfort or distress. They may choose not to communicate or participate in daily life as freely as a result. A voice pitch that does not align with their gender presentation may also lead to misgendering, discrimination, and other barriers.

How accessible is it for trans folks to receive this care?

Vocal chord surgery is generally considered to be a cosmetic procedure, and so it is unlikely that health insurance will cover the cost. It can also be hard for trans femme folks to find trans-affirming surgeons in their region.

What is the impact of this care on the recipient’s life?

After care, many trans people report improved mental well-being and a better alignment with their gender identity. The added boost in self-confidence often leads to better social integration, emotional health, and overall well-being.