Come One, Come All! GSA Welcomes New Members!

Marley Martinez, Journalist

The Gay-Straight Alliance Club is a place on campus for members of the LGBTQ+ community to feel safe and welcome. Club members can be themselves and find friends in a space free of any drama and judgment. The club president is Alex Galvez, who is a junior this year, and Mrs. Brackney is the club advisor. 

GSA isn’t an extremely structured club; the average club members are able to talk to each other, play games, and have fun. They will occasionally have guest speakers to discuss topics about the LGBTQ+ community. They’ve had the police department come and speak to the students about issues in the community and how to handle certain situations. They are working on arranging more guest speakers and making connections with other schools.

“It’s a place for [students] to be themselves and be around people who are like them or have similar beliefs as them,” stated Mrs. Brackney. “It’s just a great place to meet friends.”

Anyone who is a member of the LGBTQ+ community or an ally of the community is welcome in this club. GSA’s goal is to create a safe environment for students to feel comfortable and accepted.

“Under normal circumstances, we just meet in my room,  I feel like my room is a safe place for anyone,” Mrs. Brackney explains. “All ages, races, genders, lifestyle choices, there is no judgment when you enter… spreading that message to the whole campus is nothing but a good one.”

Galvez is in charge of leading the group meetings, helping out club members, and discussing topics with other members. Galvez also wants to be a role model for the members and help them out as much as they can.

“My responsibilities as president include getting people talking in our meetings, sharing new events or things that may be happening in future meetings, or even talking about things that maybe some members disagree on. There are a lot of different things I can do, but I mostly want to make it a respectful and honest club.”

Galvez is also looking to create a space where their peers can feel supported and proud. As a member of the community themselves, Galvez knows how hard it can be to feel comfortable. 

“I am one of the oldest members in GSA and I would like to show the younger club members that things do get better as you get older, I’ve been through many things myself because of my identity or sexual preference.”

 This year GSA hopes to gain more members and help out some of Shadow Ridge’s new freshmen. Those who are interested in joining can find more information on the school website by clicking on clubs/activities under the student’s tab.

“If you feel alone and you’re not quite ready to face the world and who you are, then this is a great place to come because no matter where you are in your life, it’s a safe place to be.”