Wins for Kansas: GLSEN

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WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

Teachers are often the first ones to see students being harassed or bullied. In this weeks Wins for Kansas, we're recognizing a non-profit that is trying to create a safe school environment for all children.

GLSEN is a national organization that advocates on behalf of LGBTQ students.

Liz Hamor is the Wichita chapter's co-founder.

"It breaks my heart to think that any child could not feel safe, loved and respected for who they are," Hamor said.

Hamor is a former teacher and admits she gets emotional talking about the kids she's trying to help. 

"A lot of our students face discrimination, harassment on a daily basis," she said. "They need to know they are loved and supported."

GLSEN was founded almost 30 years ago by a group of teachers who wanted to improve the education system to be more sensitive towards lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students. Hamor says a recent survey shows a lot of work needs to be done. 

"We got a Kansas snapshot for the first time in 2015, and it showed 90 percent of our LGBT students heard homophobic remarks at school, and 21 percent heard them from school staff. So, we have a lot of work to do around educating and helping people see that this is a daily experience for our students," Hamor said.

Through support and education GLSEN is hoping to change all that. 

"I think that our local impact is that we are empowering students and teachers and parents and community members to be visible allies to all ships to and create those inclusive environments so all of our students can feel safe."

To help them reach their goal, our partners DeVaughn James Injury Lawyers and KAKE TV are honoring GLSEN as this week's Wins for Kansas.