A Safe Space for All

The Gender Sexuality Alliance provides love and acceptance for everyone


Alyssa Bailey

The GSA Executive Board distributed rainbow ribbon pins to promote the club.

Brooke Huffman, Co-Editor-in-Chief of The Ledger

For incoming and returning students alike, it may be hard to find a place at school where they feel like they can truly be themselves. It’s hard to feel unique when you’re one of 1,300 students spending day after day in the same constant routine. For those still searching for their safe place in Liberty’s halls, the Gender Sexuality Alliance welcomes all with its message of love and acceptance.

Run by sponsor Georgean Rustemeyer and its executive board, the club is determined to welcome all students, and provide a group of people that genuinely care. The first meeting is on Aug. 29 in Ms. Genenbacher’s room (323), after school.

“GSA pretty much means a safe place where you can open up, and not get judged or anything. Whether or not you’re a part of the community, it’s just a safe place for you to talk about your day, and no matter what you’ll be accepted, and welcomed as a part of the community,” GSA advertising chair Theo Riles said. “It’s made me a more open person in general, I feel like I can just be myself and there are people out there who are for it.”

Riles isn’t the only one who takes comfort in the club’s community, GSA vice president sophomore Annika Pastrana feels the same way.

“It’s a group of people who are so welcoming, and so accepting of you, and it’s just so easy to be comfortable there,” Pastrana said. She joined the club during her freshman year, shortly after she came out as bisexual. Pastrana said the group has helped her during her coming out process, making it easier to tell her friends about her own sexuality. When asked why others should join the club, she knew exactly what to say.

“They should join GSA because it’s a family, just knowing that you’ll be accepted there and that you can be comfortable there, and you can just be yourself. There’s no reason to be nervous,” Pastrana said.

GSA President junior Eric Welker also has found his family in this community, discovering it soon after moving to Liberty.

“I had friends that told me about the club when I first got here. I had moved from South, so we didn’t filter into Liberty normally, but since I moved I got here, and I didn’t really have very many friends, and so I made some and they told me to come to GSA. When I went it was a very nice, welcoming place, and so I stayed,” Welker said. 

GSA is going through plenty of changes this year, with a new sponsor (Ms. Rustemeyer), a completely new board, and a lot of expected growth.

“I knew we were changing sponsors this year and I was really afraid that GSA was going to suffer because of that, so I wanted to make sure that I personally could work really hard to fight for this group. GSA is a nice safe space for the LGBT community at our school and allies. I think it’s very welcoming, it means a lot. A lot of my friends from last year, they helped create the group, and they called it their ‘baby,’ so it really does mean a lot to be able to step in and help this group going forward,” Welker said.

GSA is open to all sexualities and genders, members of the LGBT community and allies alike. If you would like to join the GSA family, don’t forget to attend the Aug. 29 meeting in room 323.