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Trans teen launches £6,000 fundraiser to pay for surgery

PUBLISHED: 08:33 11 March 2020 | UPDATED: 08:50 11 March 2020

Kai Welch, 18, from Norwich who has set up a fundraiser to crowdfund the £6,000 he needs for top surgery, the teenager one day hopes to work as a freelance photographer. Picture: Kai Welch

Kai Welch, 18, from Norwich who has set up a fundraiser to crowdfund the £6,000 he needs for top surgery, the teenager one day hopes to work as a freelance photographer. Picture: Kai Welch

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A transgender teenager from Norwich has launched a fundraising campaign to find the £6,000 he needs for surgery.

Kai Welch, 18, from Norwich who has set up a fundraiser to crowdfund the £6,000 he needs for top surgery. Picture: Maddy Egan-GilbertKai Welch, 18, from Norwich who has set up a fundraiser to crowdfund the £6,000 he needs for top surgery. Picture: Maddy Egan-Gilbert

Kai Welch, 18, launched his gofundme page on Tuesday, March 3, and one week into the fundraising drive he has raised £1,015.

Kai, who is currently in the last year of his A-levels, and hopes to one day work as a freelance photographer, said he had not expected the fundraiser to take off in the way it had.

He said: 'It's been an amazing response. People who I haven't spoken to in two or three years and I don't even know or only know through two or three people have been sharing it.

'It's never ever what I would have expected to happen in my life.'

Kai said he decided to set up the fundraiser after discovering how long NHS waiting times for gender identity clinics were, and with some encouragement from his friends.

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'I'm on a waiting list for an initial appointment at a gender identity clinic and you have to wait for at least two to three years for an appointment.

'I was referred about half-way through last year. You never really get told how long appointments take because of the number of referrals,' he said.

Kai said surgery was something he had been considering for about four years.

He said: 'It's not life or death but it's hard to be waiting for that long, even privately it's about a six-month wait.

'It's so I can live as me, to an extent at least.'

Kai said his family, friends and school had been 'insanely supportive' of him, adding: 'The amount of solidarity I feel from the support I am getting at the moment is brilliant.'

Thanking all those who had donated to the fundraiser, he said: 'Thank-you so much for even considering a donation. It's a cause that's so close to my heart that I can't genuinely express how grateful I am.

'It's all been quite overwhelming but in the best way.'


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