“GSA activists from across the country come together every summer at the National Gathering. The goal of the National Gathering is to support the GSA movement across the country and expand it to include even more states, cities and towns.”
This year’s event took place in Louisville, Kentucky and was hosted by The Louisville Youth Group. Among the attendees were representatives from a number of Southeastern states including Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi (of course). As part of this year’s gathering, states from designated regions were given time to plan regional action. The Southeastern region gathered to discuss making national tools and resources more culturally appropriate to the Southeast. Other groups planned regional actions and coalition building.
Among the workshops presented were a Mississippi-led discussion on rural organizing, a New Mexico/Arizona-led discussion on the Two-Spirit Movement and one entitled Define Yourself to Empower Yourself which focused on labels and how they help to define identities. As the Mississippi representative, Anna C. was able to participate in a number of workshops including co-facilitating one on Teaching Racial Justice (a workshop previously presented at Southeastern LGBTQ Activist Camp and 2011 Q&A Youth Summit).
Overall friendships were made, regional bonds were strengthened and the Safe Schools movement was pushed forward as we caught a glimpse of the young leaders in this movement.
*Image courtesy of Gay Straight Alliance Network of California