by Susan Mikula Campbell
Networking works well in the business world, so the Rev. Bob Heisner, director of Project Future in Wheatfield, wants to give it a try in another area - the future of the community.
"This is a call to all those who have concerns for our youth and the community and all the problems we are facing," Heisner said. "I've always been taught don't complain about it, do something about it."
The Project Future Center will hold a "We Can Make A Difference Rally" at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 25, at the Wheatfield Community Center, 1790 Church Road, next to Town Hall.
The "We Can Make A Difference Rally" is an opportunity for individuals and organizations who are making a difference in their own programs to network with each other and with individuals and civic groups, such as Kiwanis and Rotary, that are looking for projects to assist, Heisner said.
The free event will start with a prayer for guidance, wisdom and strength. "I don't think you can go anywhere without faith values," Heisner said.
The Project Future youth martial arts demo team will perform. Representatives of organizations attending will be invited to talk about what their group does as well as display literature about their group. A question-and-answer period will follow.
Pastor Bruce Gamache plans to attend to represent St. Peter's Lutheran Church of Wheatfield.
"Too many times we're content to sit in the pews and gripe about what's going on in the world," said Jonathan Haseley, associate in ministry at St. Peter's, where he works with youth and young adults. "This rally is giving us an opportunity to participate, be active and address the issues our community is dealing with, especially our young."
Capt. Elizabeth Springer, operations officer for Niagara Youth Marine Cadets, also is enthusiastic about the rally and the opportunity it will provide to meet with other group leaders. Marine Cadets has a Marine Corps structure and is very disciplined with a strict code of conduct, she explained, leading to future leaders and good citizens. "We are pretty elite because we make it so tough. The ones that make it through are tough," she said.
Heisner said the rally will be an opportunity to meet the community's unsung heroes who are already giving their time to make a difference in churches and groups such as Marine Cadets and the Club Hope program in Niagara Falls.
"If you are concerned about the numerous problems - drug abuse, violence, crime and bullying - make time to attend this event," Heisner said. "Remember, the choice is yours - you can ignore, not respond or choose to get involved."