Amber Gersh knows what it’s like to be teased, but she’s hoping that her newly-earned beauty queen status will help keep other kids from going through what she went through as a child.

Born with Spina Bifida, Gersh has endured health problems and more than 30 surgeries. Her condition and her use of a wheelchair made her a target for bullies, but she believes those experiences have made her stronger. They’re also the motivation behind her platform, after being crowned Miss Wheelchair Colorado 2016.

“I believe strongly in my platform because I have been bullied, it has shaped me into the adult I am now,” Gersh said.

She wants to share her message on a national stage. The first step to doing that is to compete in the Miss Wheelchair America pageant this summer. The 34-year-old is preparing to compete, by raising money on her GoFundMe page. She hopes that putting her anti-bullying platform in front of a large audience will help prevent others from being bullied like she was.

“I would like to tour and share the word about how to stop bullying, what to do with it and how to help if you see something,” Gersh said.