Beauty standards in our society are notably difficult to fit into; for transgender women, these narrow ideals and expectations can be even more difficult.
Delhi-based Ramjas College has now come forward to challenge these unrealistic beauty ideals with its social entrepreneurship society ‘Enactus’ which is being working closely with members of the transgender community to support them achieve their dreams of working in the beauty and healthcare industries.
The project was launched after talking to several trans people across Delhi. It was understood that a majority were interested in working in the beauty and personal healthcare sectors and thus aligned its initiative accordingly.
Enactus Ramjas project named TransCreations aims at social and financial upliftment of underprivileged members of the transgender community through the power of entrepreneurial action.
It aims at building social and financial inclusivity for the LGBTQIA+ community by setting up beauty salons with entrepreneurs being members of the community themselves.
The project has successfully launched four beauty salons under the brand name 'VIBGYOR'. As part of its flagship programme ‘Project TransCreations’, Enactus Ramjas has collaborated with organisations like Godrej, KPMG and Hindustan Latex Family Planning Promotion Trust (HLFPPT) to train trans people in beauty, hair and makeup.
So far it has been able to set up four VIBGYOR salons in Noida, Janakpuri and Peeragarhi.
The salons offer wide-ranging services — from facials and massage to threading, manicures, and pedicures.
Not a cakewalk
The team admits that it was a challenge at first to get people to avail the services. The team claims that since the training received by the employees was of good quality, the services being provided by them were exceptional. Eventually, people came around and started appreciating the initiative. As a positive result, the salon business started to grow.
According to the TransCreations team, the project managed to successfully sensitise over 6,700 individuals and has imparted skills to over 200 transgender people till now. The salons have provided a platform to 12 transgender people to pursue their dreams of being employed in the beauty industry.
The team now hopes to set up its own 'Centre for Entrepreneurship' to impart entrepreneurial training to help trans people become capable of running and sustaining individual ventures. It wants to open a variety of many salons across the country to provide a wide range of employment opportunities.
They don't want to end it there. They plan to take it further and launch a virtual platform to create a network of multiple members across the nation to access company listings from gender-inclusive corporates such as Uber, Zomato, and even TransCreations parlours for employment opportunities for the community.
(Edited by Amrita Ghosh)