Youth Organizing

Convening young people from all over the state, the Alliance creates a forum for students to inform, participate in and lead the Illinois LGBTQ safe schools movement. From Youth Leadership Summits, to Day of Silence/Night of Noise activities, to Gay-Straight Alliance networks—young people are working together to ensure the safety of LGBTQ youth and their allies in Illinois schools and communities.  For more information, please email Nat Duran, our Youth Engagement Coordinator.

  Youth Leadership Summits

The Alliance hosts Fall and Spring Youth Leadership Summits focusing on Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) support and technical assistance and Day of Silence/Night of Noise preparation. The Summits are opportunities for youth and GSA advisors to come together from all over the state to organize, network, learn and develop leadership on LGBTQ safe schools issues. Here’s what a youth participant said after participating in the Summit:

"Last year, after I came I worked to start a GSA and Day of Silence at my school. This year, I came back to meet new people, get more information and hopefully help others—I'm so glad this happened again!"

Day of Silence/Night of Noise

Each year, the Alliance supports youth organizing activities for the Day of Silence/Night of Noise (DOS/NON) in Illinois culminating in a NON rally in downtown Chicago. Over 400 youth gather to break the silence together, rally for safe schools for LGBTQ youth and celebrate their own participation in the DOS as agents of change in their own schools.

For more information on Day of Silence, please see

Youth Leadership

Dedicated to developing youth leadership and to creating multiple avenues for youth leadership within the organization, The Alliance’s Board includes two dedicated youth seats. In addition, the Alliance’s statewide Youth Committee advises and directs all areas of programming.

Gay-Straight Alliance Support and Technical Assistance

The Alliance is dedicated to the viability and sustainability of gay-straight alliances (GSAs) across the state of Illinois. We provide GSAs with support and technical assistance uniquely tailored to each GSA’s needs including: mission development, priority setting, and leadership development.
Register your GSA to stay connected and informed about upcoming events.