LGBTQ+ event promotes acceptance, inclusion

Recognizing American Diversity holds panel for members of the LGBTQ+ community to speak their truth.

Students+sit+at+a+panel+at+the+Recognizing+American+Diversity+LGBTQ%2B+event.+

S. Crase

Students sit at a panel at the Recognizing American Diversity LGBTQ+ event.

Delaney Cairns

When Sarah Christenson walked into the high school, she was surrounded by rainbows. While she was attending to support her boyfriend Mackx Mize as they were speaking at the event, she also has been on a journey of her own, finding who she is and accepting herself. 

When she walked through the door to the April Recognizing American Diversity event, all she felt was pride.

“Once people started filling the hall, I started to feel like I finally wasn’t alone. This event was the most accepted and safe I have ever felt,” Christenson said.

For the month of April, the RAD team compiled speakers for a panel about allyship, an LGBTQ+ novel fair hosted by the Algonquin Barnes and Noble, treats provided by UpRising Bakery, and LBGTQ+ merchandise to create an amazing event. 

Even more important to the hosts and attendees, however, was the impact the event had on the community. These events hosted by RAD are important to our community in so many ways, and this LGBTQ+ event allowed people to get an education on allyship and teach people to be open to everyone and their identities.

“I believe that these events must continue in order to make others feel as safe and understood. It is important that we continue to talk about today’s issues when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community,” Christenson said.

Emily Kaffel was one of the speakers at the event and encourages the community to remember that “words speak.”

“The words you use, whether they are intentional or not, truly have an impact. Be mindful about the words you use, especially adults, teachers, and parents. Children and students are always watching you,” Kaffel said.

The effect of this event hopefully will last a lifetime on the school and the community.

“This was my first time being to an LGBTQ+ event, and I promise it will not be my last,” Christenson said.

Join RAD for their celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander heritage and culture on May 13!