We’re proud to support a growing network of students, schools and community organizations creating safer spaces for 2SLGBTQ+ students and staff.
The GSA network provides consultation, training, event funding, school visits, networking and more to people involved in a GSA, or those who want to start one.
Due to Calgary Board of Education restrictions on outside organizations in schools, we are unable to facilitate workshops or visits to CBE schools. However, we can provide digital resources, a GSA package, buttons and other assistance. Contact us for more details!
For more information, contact our GSA Network Coordinator, Melia, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is a GSA / QSA?
GSAs are school-based groups that are student-run with teacher support. Different groups use different names, but some common names are Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA), Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) or Queer Straight Alliance (QSA).
These groups work to create safe, caring, supportive and inclusive spaces for 2SLGBTQ+ students, staff and their allies. Students meet, socialize and support one another as they discuss their feelings and experiences related to sexual orientation and gender identity.
Alberta legislation dictates that students at any school in Alberta can start a GSA. Over 100 schools in the Calgary area have one!
How we help
We can provide training for teachers and school supports looking to learn about and start a GSA. These are informal trainings catered to the needs of the school.
The GSA Network Coordinator can visit applicable schools in-person and online to facilitate discussions and run activities.
We can provide posters, stickers and resources, as well as a button maker that we can loan to GSAs wanting to create their own designs.
Every GSA can apply for a grant to use toward initiatives or projects in their schools or communities. See the GSA Funding section for more info.
Looking to start a GSA/QSA?
Our team can provide training for teachers and school supports looking to learn about and start a GSA. These are informal trainings catered to your school’s needs.
Note that due to Calgary Board of Education restrictions on outside organizations, we are unable to facilitate workshops or visits at CBE schools. However, we can provide resources and GSA packages. Contact us for details.
Just getting started? Check out Vancouver Coastal Health’s So You Wanna Start a GSA. It has lots of useful information including recommendations for activities, games, discussions, fundraisers and more.
Testimonials from the GSA Network
“Your support in getting our GSA going has been much appreciated. Knowing that there is someone I can go to if I have questions has been reassuring. Our GSA group greatly appreciated last year when you made the time to come in and discuss gender, sexuality and identity. It not only benefited the students but us as staff liaisons as well.”
-Junior High Teacher
“Being part of the GSA Network was a quintessential part of my high school experience. When I was at meetings, not only did I feel comfortable being myself, but I also felt that my voice, thoughts and ideas were being listened to and taken seriously. I met many fantastic people from across Calgary and made many long lasting connections. As someone who was very involved with my high schools QSA, it was fantastic to see how other people across the province were running theirs and the different initiatives and projects they were leading. This lead to a spread of creativity that helped influence our schools QSA for the better.”
-Grade 12 Student
GSA Event Funding
Every GSA can apply for a grant up to $100 twice per year for projects in their schools or communities, or for building skills of students in the club.
The GSA Network Coordinator will connect with the group to discuss their idea and provide additional support. Submissions are reviewed on an ongoing basis. Check out our application form below for more information.