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Meet Sammi


Sammi's story

Annual Trans Surgery Fund recipient

Sammi (he/they) has tried to save for top surgery for years, but each time, life has gotten in the way. He's struggled to afford rising costs for basic needs and survival, and has had difficulty finding work as an openly trans man. Obtaining gender-affirming health insurance that he could afford was also extremely difficult.

Sammi is currently studying to become a data scientist. They are passionate about trading and dreams of opening their own trading instutition for LGBTQ+ and POC folks to have more opportunities to break into the financial world: they see this as an opportunity to decrease the wealth gap for generations to come while also building valuable community.

Sammi shares, "There's a long list of what access to surgery means for me. I can finally wear the clothes that actually fit my body, will feel my confidence boosting. I'll be able to change the gender marker on my legal documents... In short, I will finally breathe. I don't just mean without the difficulty of wearing a binder: I mean the feeling of being fully connected with myself, too."

Sammi's timeline

  • Award Granted

    March 30, 2023

    Sammi was granted a Surgery Fund Award!
  • Care Received

    November 7, 2023

    Sammi successfully completed surgery with Dr. Garramone!
  • Update

    May 23, 2024

    Sammi shared, "One word, 'Confidence'. I have been able to exist within myself and society without having any anxiety or feelings of discomfort. I feel seen and I'm thankful for the assistance you guys gave me.

    I've been able to work out better without feeling restricted like my old binders. I've been able to speak up more which also helped me land a better job than I had before and during my surgery. So in many ways, my life has been progressive."

Grant details

$12,000 towards gender-affirming care.

TikTok-a-Thon grantee

About FTM Top Surgery

On average, it costs $12,000+ for Sammi's care.

What is it?

FTM/N top surgery is a surgical procedure that removes breast tissue and reshapes the chest contour to create a more traditionally masculine or gender-neutral appearance.

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

Prior to care, many trans masc people experience dysphoria that impacts their daily life. One of the most common and heartbreaking experiences we hear from applicants is that they cannot give hugs to their loved ones without feeling intense distress with their chest. In addition, reliance on chest binding can cause strain over long periods of time.

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

While top surgery is often categorized as a covered benefit in many insurance plans, the reality is that it's frequently denied coverage. Many people report unsuccessful attempts to appeal for coverage. In addition, finding skilled surgeons experienced in performing top surgery can be extremely challenging, particularly in states and regions most affected by anti-trans healthcare legislation.

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

Many trans folks who undergo top surgery report massive improvements to their overall well-being and mental health, leading to increased confidence and more comfort in relationships, navigating public spaces, and more.