E is for Elena (Yelena) Klimova

[one woman, who saved tens of thousands of lives by creating an online community]

E is for Elena (Yelena) Klimova

Anna-Dmitry Muratova, Senior Reporter

“Children 404” saved my life. “Children 404” saved my friend’s life. He and I are both thriving and growing these days thanks to Elena. Her brain-child, “Children 404,” was founded in 2013 to provide support for queer teenagers in Russia and other Russian-speaking places. In 2013, I was a Russian queer teenager, lost and (very, very) sad. Then, I found Elena’s page. 

“Children 404” saved thousands of lives and I wish somebody was keeping count to show how much her work means. I’m grateful and proud to be a part of this beautiful sea of people.

On June 1, 2019, I went public about my gender identity. “I am non-binary.” “I am transgender.” I am yelling from a rooftop. I love the sound of my voice as I say these words. 

Right after, I sent a message of love to the “Children 404” web page. Because they deserve all the love in the entire universe. Because I did too when I was a “404 kid.” Because they aren’t mistakes. Because I was never one, either.

Email Anna-Dmitry at [email protected]