Pride Club members pose for picture. KESTA FANG

Since the Pride Club has existed, the club has used fundraisers to protect LGBTQ+ youth and allies. One of the Pride Club Co-Presidents, Darian O’Brien, expressed that the way that they do this is by donating “all of our profits to organizations that help LGBTQ+ youth.”  

“In my opinion, I believe the Pride Club was created as a club that welcomed LGBTQ+ students as well as non-LGBTQ+ students to comfortably come together,” advisor Michel-Le Meranda stated.

The Pride Club has been planning activities recently, including a bake sale that happened on December 9th, 2022. Members are excited about this, and more activities will follow in the future. Also, the club will be trying to get more new members this year.

Pride Club usually meets on Thursday every week at 2:30 PM in B431 to go over LGBTQ+ history and “have resources for members to help support them!” said Mak O’Brien, another Co-President of the Pride Club. “We also talk about what our next fundraiser is going to be, any other updates or announcements with things related to the club,” O’Brien added.

Meranda talked about the production of fundraisers and events: “They run their ideas by me and we talk through what it would look like, what would be needed, budget, roles of the members, etc.”

“I felt like I was really making a difference,” said senior Emmalyn Woods. “It felt good to be able to fund local charities and have fun doing it. I got to know a lot of really cool people because of this club,” Woods continued. 

Woods remembered the time when they wanted to join: “I was feeling out of place with the queer community that had already been established at the time. The culture felt toxic, and I felt like nobody was doing anything to actually help queer and minority spaces as a whole.” 

Woods thought that “it’s a really well-rounded community led by people that want to see change in the world. Mak is a leader that wants what’s best for everyone, and everyone in the club does their part to make sure that everyone’s feeling motivated as well.”

Finally, Woods also wanted to help people understand and be their authentic self. “A lot of the time, we put too much time into making ourselves fit in. Do what makes you happy, and don’t hold back…trust me, you won’t regret it,” Woods said.

Meranda believed that “you are not alone, and there is a community of people who will happily support and love you for your authentic self. Never let anyone dim your light and continue living your life how you want to because no one knows you better than you do!”

O’Brien expressed that Pride Club “is welcoming and inviting of who they are and that they do not need to change themselves or put up a wall in order to fit in.”

Meranda felt that “Pride Club is a welcoming and judgment-free community. In my classroom, I display different LGBTQ flags in the hopes of educating others about different genders and sexual orientations.”

O’Brien hopes that the Pride Club is helpful for students trying to be involved in the community: “Learn a thing or two about how to create a safe environment for LQBTQ+ people. The purpose for the future of this club is to continue to make students have a safe place at school and hopefully have someone continue it when I graduate in a few years.”

There are always places that focus on and care for people in need, and the Pride Club is one of them. Supported by donations that they made, the club makes LGBTQ+ people feel comfortable in their environment. You are what you are, be the way you like to be, don’t be afraid, and take your step bravely.

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