Name: Shaan Knan
Organisation: Liberal Judaism
What does being part of Liberal Judaism mean to you?
I feel blessed to be part of a progressive faith community that embraces diversity and welcomes everyone. I have been working at Liberal Judaism's headquarters, the Montagu Centre for nearly a decade now and it is like a home and family.
What does being part of the LGBTQI+ community/an ally working towards a more inclusive Jewish community mean to you and your congregation/synagogue?
Faith offers a great opportunity to create inclusive communities. It's a myth that faith and LGBTQI+ identities are at odds with each other. Being trans and a person of faith is my superpower.
Is there anything your congregation/synagogue has recently done for the LGBTQI+ community that you would like to showcase?
I am the founder of LJ's landmark LGBTQI+ community heritage projects, supported the the Lottery Heritage Fund and proudly hosted by Liberal Judaism: Rainbow Jews, Twilight People and Rainbow Pilgrims. These projects have given a voice to marginalised, intersectional identities such as trans and non-binary people of faith or LGBTQI migrants and refugees.
More recently we teamed up with GIRES and produced a resource supporting trans people of faith in the workplace and community spaces: https://www.gires.org.uk/a-road-map-to-inclusion-supporting-trans-people-of-faith/
Who is your LGBTQI+ role model and what have you learnt from them?
My role models are people from marginalised backgrounds that platform their stories and experiences in a proactive and positive way to change the world.
Kate Bornstein was one of my first LGBTQI+ role models from a Jew-ish background; her publication 'Gender Outlaws' transformed me - literally.