Image with a purple background that reads "Camp Talahi: A Way of Life", July 3 to July 8, ages 13-17, $100 off for new campers!" On the left there is a badge with a tent and bonfire that reads "Trans/Gender-Diverse Camp"

One of a kind experience

A way of life. That is the theme for the 2022 Cohort of Trans/Gender Diverse Camp.

We’ve teamed up once again with Camp Talahi to offer a truly unique experience for transgender and gender diverse youth, ages 13 to 17 on the campgrounds in Howell, Michigan. 

The mission for our camp is to build on the confidence, resiliency, and empowerment of youth in our community through mentorship, skill-building, and creative activities. Our programming is crafted and led by trans/gender diverse folks, with support from mental health professionals, school counselors, social workers, wellness clinicians, teachers, peer support specialists, and Camp Talahi staff.

Workshops include building on relationship skills, boundary setting, and confidence in interpersonal interactions. We focus on positive coping skills, stress management, and health & wellness.

We create opportunities for mindfulness and meditative self-reflection. We create a safe, affirming environment for youth to share their stories and make new friends in our community.

Transcend the Binary leads the programming for the annual trans/gender diverse teen camp, in collaboration with the Camp Talahi Retreat and Nature Center (501c3). The programming is developed by trans/gender diverse young adults, peer counselors, peer advocates, social workers, and wellness workers to create a truly unique, one-of-a-kind experience. 

Join the camp crew

Camp Counselors

We are currently accepting applications for Camp Counselors! Seeking trans/gender diverse folx! To ensure effective support of campers, we are prioritizing counselors who are able to participate in camp from Sun., July 3rd through the morning of Fri., July 8th (or evening of Thurs., July 7th). Counselors support a group of four to five youth and help with breakout sessions, providing support, and otherwise having fun with the campers! Counselors ages 18 to 20 are considered Counselors-in-Training and will be paired with an experienced counselor.

Workshop/Activity Facilitators

Unable to participate in the full camp? Are you a queer/lgbqia+ super ally? Do you have skills in fun activities or facilitating interactive  / empowerment workshops for youth? You can apply to be a workshop/activity facilitator!

Counselors will be accepted on a rolling basis (as received). Workshops and scheduled are in the process of being solidified.  Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, first come, as received. Don’t wait. Apply now!

Camp costs

A full week of camp
  • Redistribution rate ($525): Contribute towards the scholarship of another youth accessing camp.
  • Full cost of camp ($475): Covers the complete cost of camp.
  • Solidarity rate ($425): Promote access to camp at a reduced rate.
$100 off for new campers!
  • First-time campers receive $100 off!
  • Campers who have only attended virtual offerings are eligible for this promotion.
  • Email camp@transcendthebinary.org to receive the promo code for use at checkout on the registration website.
Scholarships
  • If you wish to apply for an additional scholarship for your camper, please fill out the form, linked here.
  • Please note that there are a limited number of scholarships. If you have questions about the camper scholarship process, you can contact Camp Talahi directly at (810) 844-1499 or camptalalhi@gmail.com

Support trans youth

Deepened confidence and support

Supportive experiences such as Trans/Gender Diverse camp can be life-changing for youth – to be in an affirming space, surrounded by adults/young adults in their community, and making connections with peers of similar lived experiences. Each year, we literally bare witness to youth growing in confidence, comfort, and self-esteem while leaving camp with new friends, and a deepened support system.

Supportive experiences such as Trans/Gender Diverse camp can be life-changing for youth.

Access to this camp experience is largely dependent on generous donations and sponsorship of youth. All of our camp counselors and trans/gender diverse folx supporting the camp experience, at this point in time, are volunteers. This means that 100% of the funds go towards the cost of the camp. The majority of our youth attend on scholarship, and we want to continue to be able to ensure that no youth is turned away for financial reasons. We need your support.  

We need your support to continue our commitment of ensuring that no youth is turned away for financial resaons. 

Learn more about how you can support youth by reaching out to camp@transcendthebinary.org. We are always looking to grow our network of like-minded organizations that value the health and wellness of trans/gender diverse youth. Help us ensure access for all.  

Help spread the word

Click here to access Info & Social Media Kit

The more trans/gender diverse youth that we reach, the greater we can instill protective factors for a highly vulnerable, marginalized community. Research shows that strong supports, familial support, and positive social experiences make an impact in terms of lowering rates of self-harm, self-injury, and suicidality. Protective factors such as building a community of peers can greatly make a difference in youths’ lives – where they return back to schools, general peer groups, sports, extracurriculars, and administration, that may or may not be supportive and inclusive. We seek to create a week where youth get a break from the mainstream headlines and celebrate, get creative, have fun, and just be kids. We believe that they deserve that, and it’s an honor to be a part of their journey and give them that in an affirming and supportive environment.

Help us create change in youths’ lives. 

Thank you,

T/GD Camp Crew
Transcend the Binary (TTB)
Camp Talahi Retreat & Nature Center (CTRNC)

What to expect

Sample Camp Schedule
8:30 amBreakfast & morning check-in’s
9:00 amMeditative art/journaling
Pair & Share (optional)
10:00 amSkill-building workshop
(e.g., Coping Skills, Resilience-building, Relationship Skills)
12:00 pmLunch
1:00 pmRecharge and downtime (personal time for quiet activity)
2:00 pmWaterfront activities
(e.g., swimming, beach, canoeing)
4:00 pmNature center
5:30 pmDinner
6:30 pmCampfire: Collective storytelling (improv)
Fireside chat & support
9:30 pmEvening wind-down
Camp counselors and staff

All camp counselors are members of the transgender, nonbinary, gender non-conforming community  (trans/gender diverse). Additionally, all camp counselors are provided training on how to provide emotional support to campers and provided resources. Camp staff includes allies, school social worker, community members, and individuals experienced with curating camp programming. All staff members are trained on supporting trans/nonbinary/gender diverse youth.

Sleeping arrangements

All youth and camp counselors are bunked together in the main cabin (ratio of 1 adult to every 5 campers). Camp counselors are evenly dispersed among the campers between two large dorm rooms. Campers are allowed to choose their own bunk from either of the dorm rooms. Each camper has a shelving and storage adjacent for their personal items. 

Pack list

Below is a general packing list: 

  • Long pants (enough to reach the shoes!) 
  • Shorts
  • Shirts
  • Long-sleeved shirt
  • Bathing suit
  • Towels (2)
  • Sneakers
  • Sandals
  • Pillow
  • Twin sheets
  • Sleeping bag
  • Flashlight
  • Book or quiet activity
  • Toiletries (soap, shampoo, toothpaste/brush, etc.) 
  • Insect repellents (protection against mosquitos and ticks)
  • White shirt for tie-dye
  • Camera

Please note that CTNRC / TTB cannot be held responsible for lost or damaged property. Please do not bring expensive electronics, jewelry, or other valuable belongings. 

Prohibited items include: Food, Weapons (knives, etc.) 

Check-in and check-out

Camp begins at 4 pm EST on Sunday, January 3rd, 2022.

Check-out for camp is at 11 am EST.

Camp Talahi Retreat & Nature Center

Transcend has partnered with Camp Talahi Retreat & Nature Center (CTRNC) for several years, collaborating to offer empowering and supportive programming for the youth within our trans/gender diverse community. CTRNC is a 501c3 nonprofit organization formed by a consortium of Michigan United Church of Christ members and ministers – a liberal, progression denomination that supports the authentic expression of self and the LGBTQIA2S+ community. Their regular programming is affirming and accepting of people of all faith. Further, CTRNC is cognizant of the “church hurt” that exists within our communities and offers a genuinely supportive and accepting space.  

None of the programming for Trans/Gender Diverse Camp is religious.

Our programming focuses on connectedness with one another, with nature, and with ourselves. 

Secular, affirming programming

You can read more about Camp Talahi Retreat & Nature Center (CTRNC) above, and on their website.

Trans/Gender Diverse Camp is a secular and non-religious camp experience. While we are certainly affirming and accepting of each individual’s faith practices and religious affiliations, none of the programming for T/GD Camp is religious. 

In some ways, one could consider our camp to have a spiritual element in a humanistic, connecting with ourselves and others sort of way. However, none of this ties directly to any form of religious practice or teaching.

  • Mindfulness
  • Connecting with nature
  • Connecting with each other, humanistically
  • Self-determination
  • Developing a personal sense of meaning in one’s life

Members of Transcend have histories of church hurt/exclusion in faith communities, so this is very important to us. We have found genuine affirmation and support from our co-collaborators at CTRNC. Benefits from this partnership have included the opportunity to heal from church hurt, working closely with people who themselves are active in their faith and belong to communities that completely accept and embrace us. Having histories of “religious tolerance” – it is easy to see and feel the difference of being accepted.

If you have any questions or concerns on the programming, we would be happy to answer them.

Brayden Misiolek (he/they), bradyen@transcendthebinary.org
Kim Harris (she/her), camptalahi@gmail.com