RFH Gayla!

October 8th, 2013


Rumson — All teens from the ages of 13 to 19 are cordially invited to attend the third
annual GAYLA! This fun and inclusive event, hosted this year by Rumson-Fair Haven
Regional High School along with Make It Better for Youth, will be held in the RFH
cafeteria from 7 to 10 p.m. on Friday, May 10.

“”We look forward to another phenomenal evening in a welcoming and supportive
atmosphere,” said Kate Okeson, an Art Teacher at RFH and co-founder of Make It
Better for Youth, the Monmouth Country Consortium for LGBT Youth.

The annual GAYLA! event is hosted by Make It Better for Youth in partnership with a
different Monmouth County high school each year. This year marks the first time that
RFH high school will be hosting. Previous events were held at Middletown South and
Monmouth Regional High Schools. The event draws students from many different high
schools, and there were over 130 attendees last year.

Ms. Okeson stated that the students who attend GAYLA! traditionally maintain an ultra-
respectful atmosphere, and that many lasting friendships are forged.

“At all of these events, everything just meshes beautifully and the students have a
wonderful time,” said Ms. Okeson. “The level of volunteerism from parents, teachers,
and the surrounding communities is just amazing.”

As an example, Ms. Okeson noted that county and regional police officers who are
members of GOAL — the Gay Officers Action League — will be handling security
at the doors. Parents from Jersey Shore PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of
Lesbians and Gays) and Monmouth Country PFLAG plan to volunteer at the check-
in desk, and teachers will act as chaperones. Local restaurants and eateries will
provide refreshments and snacks, and dance tunes will be in the capable hands of
volunteer “DJ Mister Zero.”

Although there is no formal dress code for the evening, students attending past events
have mostly sported dressy but not overly formal attire. The cost to attend is $20 at the
door, and funds collected will be used to produce future Make It Better for Youth events
to be held throughout the year.

Students attending GAYLA! need to submit a permission form online, bring a signed
permission slip to the event, or have a parent or guardian sign a permission slip at drop-
off. The permission form and more information can be found at MakeItBetter4Youth.org.

Students not attending RFH must provide proof of age and/or a photo identification at
the door as well. All GAYLA! attendees must have their own transportation to and from
the school, and must leave the school premises by 10:15 p.m.

Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School is located at 74 Ridge Road in Rumson,
New Jersey.

For more information on GAYLA!, visit MakeItBetter4Youth.org or email

Mary Ann Kampfe, RFHRHS Public Relations
mkampfe@rumsonfairhaven.org or 908-347-8885

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