Activist Camp

What is the SMYAL Activist Camp?

Due to Covid-19, SMYAL’s annual Activist Camp has been replaced with Rise Up!: A National Conference for Queer and Trans Youth Organizers, a free, week-long, online conference. To learn more, and register, for Rise Up! click here. 


Activist Camp is a four day, three night camp for youth ages 13-19 years old, who identify as LGBTQ+ or an ally youth across DC, Maryland, and Virginia. This year’s Activist Camp primes campers to jump into activism of their own! Through workshops, guest speakers, and field trips across the city, we will unpack what it means to do political advocacy, grassroots organizing, arts activism, and archival activism (preserving history!)

When is the Activist Camp?


Dates: July 13, 2020 – July 19, 2020


Rise Up! begins at 2 pm EST on Monday, July 13th and ends at 6:30 pm EST on Sunday, July 19.


What is the DC Regional GSA Network?


The DC Regional GSA Network builds the power of LGBTQ+ youth and Gender & Sexuality Alliances across the DC, Maryland, and Virginia metropolitan area to make schools safer for all. We coordinate leadership trainings, regional summits and conferences, and advocacy activities, the activist camp, and a regional youth council (which you should be a part of!)


How much does it cost?

SMYAL’s Activist Camp is FREE! SMYAL will cover all travel, food, and accommodations for the duration of the trip. This includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks, as well as travel to and from SMYAL and our camp lodgings, and any other trips or events that we take campers on! That said, if you’re a heavy snacker, or think you’ll want to dive into any gift shops we might come across, make sure to bring some of your own money!


Who Can Go to Activist Camp

SMYAL’s Activist Camp is open to all youth ages 13-19 who live in DC, Maryland, or Virginia! If you have any questions about your eligibility, please reach out to [email protected].

Sample workshops include:

  • Unpacking Power, Privilege, and Intersectionality
    Find Your Ally(ship)
    Trans 101 & 102
    Creating Grassroots Change

Sample activities include:

  • Talent Show
  • Mural Painting
  • Making zines