Body Positive Syringe Services Programs

This webinar overviews how to build affirming and body-positive syringe services programs for Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming people. Panelists discuss how to successfully reach and serve Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming people, what supplies to stock, and key messages to use. Featuring two case studies – one small independent syringe services program and one housed within an already existing, larger organization – there is something for everyone to learn on this webinar!

Download the slides here.


Shira Hassan is the former Director of the Young Women’s Empowerment Project where the participatory evaluation that she co-designed and implemented was recognized by the United Nations as part of its Universal Periodic Review of the U.S. treatment of people in the sex trade (2009). Shira was featured on National Public Radio and provides organizational and program development, fundraising, participatory evaluation/action research and partners with staff and organizational leaders to develop sustainable practices. She received her Masters in Social Work from New York University in 2002. As a youth, Shira advocated for syringe exchange access for her peer group. Since that time, she has focused on the experiences of girls, boys, transgender and queer youth involved in the sex trade and street economy. To date, she has established four syringe exchanges that serve the Trans and Gender Non-Conforming community. Shira has lived and worked in Chicago and New York City where she partners with community based organizations, funders and young people to design, implement and evaluate model programs and organizations that center youth leaders in social services and advocacy. She has trained and spoken nationally on group work, transformative justice and engaging youth who are in the sex and drug trade.

Victori Motherwell is a Program Manager in trans health at the largest LGBTQA health center in the Midwest. Victori mobilizes the senior leadership team to create agency-wide trans-competence initiatives, as well as supervises the implementation of a HRSA-funded trans-specific research grant. This position revolves around the development and implementation of effective models for engaging and retaining transgender patients into care, with the ultimate goal of identifying systems that may be replicated nationally. His duties include staff supervision, budget management, daily program operations, site visit coordination, and staff training, development, and team building. He also coordinates with colleagues from seven different divisions – including medical providers, nurses, medical assistants, patient service representatives, insurance navigators, PrEP/PEP and HIV/STI counselors and pharmacy – in order to staff the eight trans-specific health program they hold per month. Victori is also the Principal and Founder of Activation Studios, which brings the design expertise, project management skills, facilitation know-how, and commitment to vision that is needed to activate incredible spaces together. Victori received a BA in Material Cultures and Socio-Economics from Sarah Lawrence College and an MA in Interior Design from the Harrington College of Design.