Club Spotlight: Gay Straight Alliance

Club Spotlight: Gay Straight Alliance

Marlena Carrillo, Staff Writer

The Gay Straight Alliance, also known as GSA, is an interest club here at Gaither where students, gay or straight, can gather to support the LGBTQ community in a safe and accepting way.

Their goal this year is to gain more recognition and help the school, especially the students, including those who are gay and need help or simply a safe place to express their feelings and problems to others just like them.

In a time where the LGBTQ community is popping up in the news and media more and more each day, often amidst a sea of discrimination and violence, a club like GSA is especially important.

“Teenagers really need a place where they can feel safe and accepted and wanted, and I think that our club really helps that,” Kya Lockler, junior and president of GSA, said. “They have a connection with these other people, and they have a connection with the other students who are going through the same thing. They have that outlet that they can use to feel important and feel like they’re making a difference.”

The club participates in multiple school events in their efforts to help students as well. This year’s agenda includes a homecoming booth, an Awareness Day and a possible Day of Silence, which brings attention to the harassment and bullying of LGBTQ students and calls for an end to anti-LGBTQ actions, and fundraisers.

While the club has mainly been welcomed at Gaither, not everyone has seen it as a positive thing. “I don’t think everyone is accepting of it,” Lockler admits. “Obviously people still have problems with the LGBTQ community. [Some] parents are upset that we have the club, but we do it anyways for the students.”

GSA meets every club day with their sponsor, English teacher Chelsea Daubar. They also meet after-school about once a month, and a more definite schedule will be made later based on what works for their members.

“I think students should join because it is a really positive, influential way to support each other and to help each other with your problems,” Lockler said. “People feed off of each other in a good, positive, helpful way, and I feel like we create an environment where students can do that. It doesn’t matter if you’re gay, it doesn’t matter if you’re straight, you should be able to come in and support one another.”

Students interested in joining can find GSA at Club Rush, which begins next week. This year they hope to make students of all genders and sexual orientation feel welcome at school, and bring Gaither one step closer to a more loving and accepting community.