Gender Construction Kit Logo

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you help me with a problem?

Unfortunately we don’t have the resources to provide individual advice or support to people. If you need help, try our UK helplines and advice page, or look for support groups on our UK Organisations page.

I’ve found a mistake in the site - can you fix it?

Spotted something that isn’t correct? Please tweet us or message us on Facebook to let us know.

Why haven’t you got an article about (x)?

We probably haven’t had time to write it yet. We have a long queue of articles waiting to be written on many different subjects. As time passes the site will cover a wider area of topics.

Is this site just for transgender people? Is this site just for nonbinary people?

We recognise that some people experience gender dysphoria - discomfort with their body or how other people treat them relating to gender - which can be a very severe condition and that changing things to alleviate it can be life-changing.

We also believe anyone should able to change things about themselves linked to gender - regardless of what words they use to describe themselves, who they are, or whether they experience dysphoria.

This means this site is intended for everyone to use.

Why don’t you list my identity on the identities page?

Either we haven’t had time to write an article about it yet, or it’s not commonly used enough yet.

If you’d like your organisation to appear on the UK Organisations page, tweet us or message us on Facebook to let us know. Please note that we will only add organisations which have a public Facebook page or Twitter account - this is so visitors can see if you are still active or not, what sort of things you do, and contact you easily.

You’ve linked to my organisation / company / support group but the description is wrong!

We copy either the way you describe your organisation on the Twitter profile for your account or the Facebook page for your account. We periodically update all of this information, so if something out of date, tweet us or message us on Facebook to let us know and we’ll arrange to update it.

Why is the site just for UK people?

The UK is in a unique situation for building a site like this:

  • the UK has the National Health Service, which provides healthcare for free at the point of access, so accessing many medical services is significantly easier and simpler than in some other countries. There are only four different NHS organisations setting policies at national levels affecting medical treatments linked to gender (NHS England, NHS Scotland, NHS Wales, and HSC NI), meaning that what people can expect across the country from healthcare is relatively consistent and simple for us to describe.
  • there is already an existing authoritative database on the NHS website describing a huge amount of medical conditions and how they are treated in the UK. This database also has lots of information about common cosmetic treatments and general health advice. This means that for a UK audience, we can refer people directly to existing expert advice that already exists, and all we have to write is information specific to people changing things linked to gender.
  • UK gender clinicians have published books which we could use as reliable, authoritative, citable sources of information on changing things linked to gender in the UK. The books contain information written by the exact clinicians and surgeons that will be used by a UK audience describing exactly how their processes work. More books has been published in 2017 meaning that the information on this site can be completely up-to-date.
  • there is a centralised publicly available database of information about medicines prescribed in the UK, the eMC, which allows us to easily find reliable and up-to-date information on the uses and risks of medicines.
  • the UK Office of National Statistics releases detailed historical data about names we can use under the Open Government License, and UK activists have produced information about pronoun and title use in the UK as part of the Nonbinary Stats project.
  • previous UK websites had already produced useful lists of organisations, publications and helplines that could be combined and reused on this site; and the country is small enough that this information is directly useful to people resident in most parts of the UK.

These advantages combined mean that building a UK site is probably significantly easier to do than it is for other countries.

This site is run by volunteers with limited time, and as the team is UK based and has extensive experience of the UK gender system, we’ve chosen to describe what we know best and can do quickly and easily. There are no plans to add information for people in other countries at this time.

The site is designed so that elements can be easily reused by other groups running other websites - if you’d like to reuse parts of the site on another site, please contact us and we may be able to offer advice.

There’s already a site that does (x) for people in the UK - why did you build another one?

Existing sites tend to fall into one of two types:

  • one or a small group of activists run a site. Keeping things up to date is difficult because a small number of already overworked people have to maintain the site on their own. Eventually the maintainers hit activist burnout and stop being able to keep the site up to date. There’s no easy way to transition ownership of the site, and finding people to want to take over the site is difficult because of the amount of work and technical expertise involved in maintenance.
  • one or a small group of activists set up a wiki. Initially everything goes well because anyone can join in to help - but as soon as the wiki becomes visible enough to be useful to people, spam bots and malicious people invade. The work of maintaining a wiki quickly becomes overwhelming, and in order to ensure the survival of the site, the wiki is closed to new editors. Now the site has the same problems as in the first situation.

Gender Construction Kit is intended to be different to avoid these problems:

  • we’re a project on GitHub, meaning that while people can easily submit contributions, it’s not so easy to do so that we’re a likely target for spam, and there are built in methods for sharing and transferring ownership of the site
  • all the content is Creative Commons licensed so that people can easily reuse the work done for this site in other websites
  • we have built automated tools to help data up-to-date in order to minimise the amount of work required, and carefully chosen how much data is held on the site in order to keep the amount of maintenance required to a minimum
  • as much data as we can has been stored in the human-readable YAML format so that no knowledge of how databases work is required to edit or maintain the site, making it easy for other people to use on other sites or take ownership of
  • we use the widely-used and well established Jekyll site generator to create an entirely static website in order to keep the financial cost of maintaining the site to the absolute minimum possible, reducing our need to perform fundraising activities to survive
  • we deliberately avoid traditional activism activities such as advocacy and campaigning, supporting individuals, and providing training in order to focus on just maintaining an online informational resource. We believe in and fully support the need for organisations performing these tasks and are grateful for the incredible work they do.

Errors and omissions

Is there something missing from this page? Have you spotted something that isn't correct? Please tweet us or message us on Facebook to let us know.